April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and a great time to underscore the staggering statistics associated with distracted driving in the United States.
More than 3,000 people were killed and 431,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers in 2014 alone. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 10 percent of all drivers between the ages of 15 and 19 who were involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crashes. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of the crashes.
As a leader in the fight against distracted driving, Anapol Weiss Shareholder Joel Feldman has gained a thorough understanding of the consequences of these numbers. Feldman founded End Distracted Driving (EndDD.org) after his daughter Casey was killed by a distracted driver in 2009. He used the perspectives of doctors, teen experts and psychologists to create a highly effective, scientifically-based distracted driving presentation.
“As parents, we would do anything to keep our children safe,” Feldman said. “However, teens at my presentations so frequently tell me their parents are hypocritical and drive distracted all the time. After Casey was killed, I realized I had driven distracted often and even with my kids in the car. I would regularly text, email, talk on the phone, program the GPS while driving, and eat while driving. So, maybe we as parents need to change the way we drive and the way we speak with our children about this important safety issue. Start that conversation by being the driver you want your teen to be.”
The EndDD.org campaign aims to “preserve life and promote safety on a large scale through advocacy, education, and action.” With the help of hundreds of lawyers, nurses, physicians, safety experts and other professionals, the presentation has reached more than 275,000 teens from across the U.S. and Canada.