AUSTIN — The Texas Department of Transportation has launched its "Text.Talk.Crash" campaign to combat one of the fastest growing threats on Texas roadways.
“Distracted driving is unacceptable, and it’s something that is preventable,” said John Barton, TxDOT’s deputy executive director. “If you reply to or send a text while driving, you are putting your life or someone else’s life at risk.”
According to a press release, there were 90,378 crashes in Texas in 2012 that involved distracted driving, which is an 8 percent increase from 2011. Of those crashes, TxDOT said 18,468 resulted in serious injuries and 453 resulted in death.
Some more shocking numbers (source: Texas A&M Transportation Institute):
- Nearly half of Texas drivers in 2012 admitted to regularly talking on the phone while driving
- 84.9 percent of Texas drivers think driving while talking on a phone is a threat to their safety
- Of the 90,378 in 2012, 28,443 involved drivers between 16 and 24 years old
- 23,784 of those crashes involved drivers over the age of 45
The "Text.Talk.Crash" campaign coincides with National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. TxDOT will be reaching out to Texans through community events, TV public service announcements, and online and outdoor advertising. TxDOT is also asking Texans to do their part by making a commitment to focus on driving while behind the wheel -- not texting, chatting or anything else.