April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

It’s a scary statistic—eight out of 10 traffic crashes in Virginia are related to a distracted driving incident.

Just a quick look away from the road could end in a serious crash that injures you, your passengers, a pedestrian or cyclist, or someone in another vehicle.

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month in Virginia and a good time to remember that driving should be your priority when you are behind the wheel. So buckle up, and put your phone down.

Virginia Farm Bureau has partnered with Drive Smart Virginia to bring awareness to the issue of distracted driving.
For more information and safety tips, visit DriveSmartVa.org.

Distractions not limited to phones

According Drive Smart Virginia, text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted. Talking on a cell phone can double the likelihood of an accident, and social media apps can be a dangerous diversion as well.

Here are tips for staying focused on the road:

  • Avoid eating and drinking while driving.
  • Use a GPS system that has voice navigation so you don’t have to look down to follow directions.
  • Turn off or silence your phone, or put it out of reach if necessary.
  • Maintain a safe following distance between your car and the car ahead of you. This will leave you time to act should an event occur.
  • Wear your seatbelt. Even if you do everything right, you still can be involved in a car crash if another driver is distracted.
  • Set a good example for your children. Studies show that children pick up on their parents’ driving habits, both good and bad.

State law is good incentive to put devices away

Virginia has a primary texting while driving law. Drivers who use their phone to manually enter multiple letters or text in an effort to communicate with another person are guilty of texting and driving. 

It’s also illegal to read any email or text message while driving. The fine for a first offense is $125, and a second or subsequent offense carries a $250 fine.


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