Informative Paper on Distracted Driving

Logan L

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When it comes to driving, there are many responsibilities to go along with it. Driving, like many other things, is a privilege, and if people don’t act correctly and use their privilege responsibly, their license, ability to drive, and sometimes even their life, are taken away at the cost of a simple mistake. According to, around 421,000 people are injured in crashes that involved a driver being distracted. 330,000 of those people were texting and driving, one of the biggest problems with distracted driving. About 78% of all distracted drivers are injured in some way due to using their phone while driving. Teenagers are the largest age group to be distracted before being involved in a fatal crash with around 58% of all teenage crashes being related with driver distraction. Whether you’re on your phone, tampering with the radio, adjusting the windows or the air conditioning, or even reaching for a drink. It’s all examples of distracted driving and even if they take one to five seconds to do, that amount of time where your eyes aren’t on the road can be just enough for you to miss a stop sign, go off-road, or turn into another lane where another vehicle just happens to be. A lot of times, people seem to think that if there is any time to pull out your phone or tune to a specific channel on the radio, it’s at a red light. Sure, you lose the risk of crashing into another vehicle or an object, but let’s say you pull out your phone to text someone and the light turns green. You’re going to be too busy texting your friend than notice that the light just changed until the people behind you get frustrated and honk at you. Distracted driving also happens to be one of the main causes for road rage, which is defined by the AAA Foundation as, “violent anger caused by the stress and frustration involved in driving a motor vehicle – a motorist’s uncontrolled anger that is usually provoked by another motorist’s irritating act is expressed in aggressive or violent behaviors with an intention to cause physical harm.” If someone sees another driver with their phone in their hand with no eyes on the road, they are going to know that if it is not stopped, then it has the potential to turn into a serious wreck. First, they get frustrated at that driver and most people will try and get the driver to put his phone down. The driver can either do as he/she was told and focus on the road, or they reply with a sarcastic reply. Then, they become angry at that driver for his behavior and that anger turns into road rage. It’s very common and all you have to do is search up “Road Rage Compilation” on Youtube to find hundreds of videos of people recording either themselves or another person having road rage. The point is, distracted driving is serious and is a big problem that is difficult to put an end to. Many groups have been starting to bring awareness to this issue, such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA. It’s a big group that has been working on changing the course and educating newer generations about why distracted driving is and always will be a bad idea. NHTSA has partnered up with U.S. DOT, the Department of Transportation and they have been helping mobilize law enforcement officers nationally to look out for distracted driving. They have also been using the method of placing advertisements on some of the most popular platforms in the world like Youtube, Spotify, Twitter, etc. NHTSA Deputy Administrator Heidi King said this during a press release, “Cell phones have a place in our lives, but not while driving. Everyone should understand the very real dangers of texting while driving. Taking your eyes off the road for a moment is all it takes to cause a crash and change lives forever. Remember, no text or call is worth a life.”