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4/12/22blog post

don't drive distracted: learn risk factors that prevent safe driving

are you at risk for distracted driving? take our quiz to see

Most people perceive themselves as good drivers, yet in 2019 alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) 3,142 people were killed due to distracted driving.  Locally, the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission reported that from 2017 to 2019 that there was 1 fatal crash every 5 days in the Dayton region. It’s easy to become distracted while driving which can turn a car ride into a fatal situation. Taking your eyes off the road for even five seconds amounts to driving the entire length of a football field with your eyes closed.  Dayton Children’s emergency department has seen a 49% increase in child injuries related to motor vehicle crashes from 2020 to 2021.  

Take this Distracted Driving: Are You At Risk Quiz from I’m Safe to see how at-risk you are for the dangers of distracted driving. 

If you marked yes for even one of these questions, you are at risk! Nearly 80% of all crashes and 65% of all near-crashes involved driver inattention during the last 3 seconds before the incident.   

Follow these tips from I’m Safe and keep you and your family safe while on the road.  

  • Know the law: It is illegal to text and drive. Some states punish drivers who text with jail time.  
  • Get yourself ready: Do what you need to do before you go. Do not plan to eat, change, shave or put on makeup in the car.  
  • Get your car ready: Before you start your car, adjust your seat and mirrors. Set your radio. Turn on your heater or air conditioning. Program your GPS.  
  • Secure your pets: Pets can be a big distraction. Secure your pets before you start driving.  
  • Save yourself and others: Turn off your phone while you drive. Drivers who use their phones are 4 times more likely to hurt someone.  
  • Pullover: Pull over and stop if you need to answer your phone, comfort the baby or deal with a child.  
  • Keep car time quiet: Noise can distract you. Insist that children talk and play quietly in the car.  
  • Get plenty of sleep: If you're tired, get rest. It is better to be late or miss an event than to nod off while you drive.  

Distracted driving not only impacts you; it impacts your friends, family and community. Set a good example for your kids and keep them safe by following these safe driving tips.  

For more information on distracted driving, check out these resources: 

https://www.cdc.gov/transportationsafety/distracted_driving/index.html 

https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/distracted-driving 

https://www.childrensdayton.org/the-hub/tips-stay-safe-road-summer  

Alexa Wene

Injury Prevention Coordinator-Child Passenger Safety
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