Targeting Distracted Driving
A week ago, a Coconino Community College student was running late to class and decided to save time by putting on her makeup in her car while driving. She failed to notice that she was going 12 mph over the posted speed limit. When she was pulled over for speeding the young woman admitted she hadn’t even noticed the two-person team of Arizona Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol officers had been following her for about a mile.
“The girl that was applying makeup, she goes, ‘I didn’t even realize it was an issue. I was just running behind and trying to get to school today. I didn’t even realize I was speeding,’” said Highway Patrol Officer Jon Sacchini, who made the stop.
Pay Attention to Avoid Distracted Driving
“We want to make people pay a little more attention,” said DPS spokesman Sgt. Gary Phelps. “We want them to focus on the primary task at hand, which is driving.”
Logging Traffic Stops
Since November 2013, DPS has been asking its Highway Patrol officers to keep a log of all of their distracted driving-related traffic stops. From late November to April 1, DPS officers responded to 10,166 crashes on state highways, and of those crashes, 1,163 were attributed to distracted driving.
Distracted Driving Not Just Texting
It’s not just texting. Besides electronics, officers found distracted driving as the result of grooming, eating, drinking, smoking, pets, other occupants of the vehicle, and outside distractions, which was found to be the leading cause of distracted driving, resulting in 255 crashes. “Reaching for objects” within the vehicle and cellphone use came in second and third as most common distractions.
“We tend to think about distracted driving as texting or using a cellphone,” Phelps said. “But really, distracted driving has been around since the first time a driver took his family out for a drive.”
If you’ve suffered from a distracted driving accident, you need the expert advice of distracted driving attorneys such as those at Personal Injury Attorneys PLLC.
Source: AZ Daily Sun, Arizona DPS targets distracted driving, April 24, 2014
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