It's April—Are You an Aware Driver?
We hear so much about distracted driving, but what does it really mean? April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, a whole month dedicated to helping people understand the dangers of distracted driving and how they can protect themselves.
Have you ever engaged in distracted driving, perhaps without realizing it? Take this fast quiz to see if you’ve been a victim of distracted driving temptations.
Have you ever done any of the following while driving?
- Read messages on your phone
- Talked on a hand-held phone
- Sent a message on your phone
- Been so involved in a conversation that you forgot to stop at a stop sign
- Applied makeup at a traffic light
- Struggled to get that to-go lid off your coffee
If you must sheepishly admit to any of these actions, then you’ve engaged in distracted driving. And you’re not alone—people often drive distracted, and they might not consider the consequences.
But think about this: If your eyes aren’t on the road, it’s like you’re driving with a blindfold on. Doesn’t sound so good, does it?
For many, those moments of distracted driving come with a steep price tag. In 2019, a total of 3,142 people died in the United States just from distracted driving.
The Colorado Department of Transportation is helping create awareness and launched Distraction Reactions as part of their April Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Their short but effective video shows what people may be thinking when they see you driving distracted—and the possible consequences.
Most states have banned text messaging for drivers. In a further step, 23 states don’t let drivers use handheld cell phones at all while driving.
What can help you avoid distractions?
Are you looking for motivation and tools to help you avoid distractions on the road? Take the following steps:
- Pledge to yourself that you won’t check out social media apps, send texts or talk on the phone while driving.
- Use hands-free features on your phone or vehicle.
- Reflect on the fact that you may get a costly ticket (and points on your license!) if you violate the law.
- If you truly must send an urgent text, pull over to a safe location.
- Do you have a Do Not Disturb feature on your phone? Use it! Activate it before you start your engine and before you're tempted to answer calls or messages.
- If you’re the passenger and you notice the driver getting a bit distracted, offer to help. You can send that text message for them, adjust the radio, or get what they need out of their bag.
After all, everything else can wait. But the road won’t.
#DropTheDistraction #DistractedDrivingAwarenessMonth #JustDrive