What will it take to get teenagers to learn texting and driving don’t mix? Current efforts to get that message to teen drivers seem to have fallen short.
We still read reports almost daily of a terrible accident caused by distracted driving. Eight out of 10 times you can bet it is a teenage driver who was texting behind the wheel.
That was the case earlier this week when a McMinn County deputy sheriff and a 17-year-old were involved in a collision that sent both drivers to the hospital. The Tennessee Highway Patrol said the teen driver was texting and driving when he crossed the center line and struck the deputy’s car.
A study released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration earlier this year found two out of 10 drivers admit they have texted while driving. A majority of that number are teenagers and young adults.
A report from the Centers from Disease Control and Prevention found 31 percent of drivers ages 18-64 say they have read or sent text messages or email messages while driving.
Parents should set an example for their teenagers by not texting when they are behind the wheel.
They also should talk to their teens about the dangers of distracted driving and tell their sons or daughters to put the smartphone away until they arrive at their destinations.