Funding to Crackdown on Messaging

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) launches a nationwide campaign against distracted driving and a crackdown on messaging.

States where text messaging is both prohibited and a primary offense may get $8 million in grant funding to support this and other efforts designed to fight distracted driving.

Several states have already started crackdowns by law enforcement agencies. In New Jersey, as an example, the crackdown started on April 1 and will continue until April 21.

Deadly Epidemic

Drivers talking and messaging on their phones while driving are in focus for this campaign.

Distracted driving has become a deadly epidemic on America’s roads, and teens are especially vulnerable because of their inexperience behind the wheel“, says Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

What is the leading cause of death among teenagers in U.S.?

Is it:

 A. Drug overdose.

 B. Intentional self-harm (suicide).

 C. Traffic crashes.

 D. Cancer.

You guessed correctly. It is traffic crashes. American teens are involved in three times as many fatal crashes as all other drivers. 16 percent of teen drivers involved in fatal crashes were distracted while driving.

The Laws in Your State

Make sure you know the laws in your state. When you apply for your first permit, you are very likely to be asked about cell phone and messaging restrictions.

Currently 43 states and District of Columbia ban text messaging for all drivers, regardless of age.

12 states and District of Columbia prohibit all drivers, regardless of age, from using a handheld cell phone while driving.

Even if the use of a handheld phone is allowed in your state, the safest thing you can do is not to use your phone while driving. Pull of the road if you must use your phone. Using your phone with a hands-free device is also an option, but limit all use as much as possible.

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