The next time you get behind the wheel, put your cellphone in a place where you can’t access it while you drive and try to get to your destination without touching your cellphone. That’s the new challenge that officials at the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) are urging drivers to take in order to:
- Reduce their own car crash risk
- Stop the increasing trend in distracted driving crashes that is plaguing Colorado.
In fact, as CDOT has reported, over the past year or so, distracted driving accidents in Colorado have increased more than 1 percent, with at least:
- 15,574 distracted driving crashes occurring in Colorado in 2015
- 68 people being killed in these crashes – This effectively means that at least 1 in every 8 deadly auto wrecks in Colorado involves a distracted driver.
Now, officials are making the call to motorists to drop the ‘Killer Habit’ of distracted driving and do their part to prevent crashes and save lives. This new anti-distracted driving campaign will reportedly involve running “movie theater ads, online pre-roll video, and Pandora audio, video and digital ads” aimed at:
- Educating Colorado motorists about the dangers of distracted driving
- Urging them to focus on the driving effort and environment when behind the wheel.
Highlighting authorities’ concerns related to distracted driving, CDOT Communications Manager Sam Cole has explained:
Unlike alcohol-impaired driving, there’s no quick test, like a breathalyzer, to tell if someone was distracted at the time of the crash. Some drivers involved in crashes don’t admit they were driving distracted.
Col. Scott Hernandez, Chief of the Colorado State Patrol (CSP), has noted similar concerns about the dangers of distracted driving, commenting that:
Even if you consider yourself an exemplary driver, distracted driving affects your ability to respond to immediate road hazards and other drivers. We’re seeing more and more crashes involving distracted driving.
3 Important Facts to Understand about the Perils of Distracted Driving
Revealing more about the dangers of distracted driving – and why CDOT’s new campaign is so important, here are some key facts about this risky and often deadly practice:
- Distracted driving can cause the same impairments as drunk driving – In fact, both of these driver misbehaviors can create perception and coordination impairments, as well as delay reaction times. When there may only be seconds to respond to changing driving conditions, these impairments can significantly increase the risk of a crash.
- Hands-free devices can be just as distracting as handheld cellphones – This is generally due to the fact that the conversation itself (rather than the act of holding the device) is the distraction. According to some research,1 using hands-free and hand-held devices can cause inattention blindness, which can prevent drivers from seeing/perceiving as much as 50 percent of their driving environment even if they are looking directly at their surroundings.
- Although many drivers agree that distracted driving is dangerous, they don’t think it is a problem for them – In other words, a prevailing (and dangerous) misconception is that distracted driving is only problematic when other drivers do it. This misguides many motorists into continuing to give into distractions when behind the wheel because they mistakenly think that they can safely multitask while driving.
Will you take CDOT challenge and commit to not using your cellphone while driving? Do any of the facts about the dangers of distracted driving surprise you? Tell us what you think on Facebook & Google+.
Get Experienced Help Recovering from a Car Crash: Contact Englewood Attorney D.J. Banovitz
If you have been hurt in a distracted driving accident or any type of traffic wreck, contact Englewood Attorney D.J. Banovitz for honest answers about your options for compensation and justice. Trusted by clients and well regarded by peers, Attorney D.J. Banovitz has the experience, insight and skills you can count on for effective legal advocacy and the best possible outcome to your case.
To discuss your potential case and options for justice, contact Attorney D.J. Banovitz by calling (303) 300-5060 or by sending our firm an email via the contact form on this page.
From offices based in Englewood, Colorado, Attorney D.J. Banovitz provides the highest quality representation to injured people throughout Arapahoe County, Denver County, Douglas County and the state of Colorado.
1: Research findings on inattention blindness and distracted driving have reported by officials at the National Safety Council (NSC).