Distracted Driving Affected Me

ddam-logo2.pngDistracted driving is a dangerous activity and is prevalent on Nebraska's roadways. In Nebraska there were 4,699 distracted driving crashes with 1,546 injuries and 19 fatalities in 2017. Nationally, 3,450 people were killed in distracted driving crashes in 2015.

CLICK HERE to see the stories of 4 families that have been affected by Distracted Driving

 

If it has affected you, you know something has to change.   If it hasn't, unfortunately statistics show that it is just a matter of time – unless we instill change.

Help us make that change.

Click on any of the tabs below to find more information on Distracted Driving.

In Remembrance

Death leaves a heartache no one can heal.
Love leaves a memory no one can steal.

Below, we remember those who have been affected by distracted driving.

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Ashley Wooden | 1995-2007 | Omaha, NE

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Clifford Endorf | 1968-1991 | Fairbury, NE

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Paul Troupe | 1991-2014 | Omaha, NE

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Cady Reynolds | 1990-2007 | Omaha, NE

Distracted Driving Stories

Cell Phone Use a Factor in Morning Collisions by WOWT 2.12.19

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Teens Make up Disproportionate Amount of Cell Phone Related Crashes by KMTV 12.19.18

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Push to Toughen Distracted Driving Laws by KMTV 11.27.18

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Son's Death in Wreck Prompt's Family's Advocacy by KMTV 11.20.18

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National Safety Council President Says We Need to Shift Our Thinking by KMTV 11.1.18

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Story submitted by T. Karns 10.19.18

I was sitting at a red light when someone hit me from behind- they were texting and driving.  It gave me a lower lumbar strain. One year later, I'm still missing family events and in pain.  I have had several procedures to help the pain, nothing works.  PLEASE don't text and drive, I am alive to talk about this, but it could have ended another way.

Submit your distracted driving story here

Businesses Asked to Take Stand Against Distracted Driving by KMTV 10.2.18

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National Safety Council, Nebraska Launches Ad Campaign by KMTV 9.12.18

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A Focus on Distraction by WOWT 9.12.18

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New Ads Spotlight Human Cost of Distracted Driving by KMTV 9.11.18

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Distracted Driving Crashes on the Rise by WOWT 7.25.18

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Distracted Driving Statistics
  • Each day in the United States, approximately 9 people are killed and more than 1,000 injured in crashes that are reported to involve a distracted driver (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC)

  • In Nebraska in 2017, 36 of the 157 traffic crashes involving cell phone distractions involved teen drivers (23%). (Nebraska Department of Transportation, NDOT)

  • Over the last 10 years, on average, Nebraska drivers aged 15-19 have been involved in 39 cellphone distraction crashes per year. (NDOT)

  • From 2010-2017, 32,011 crashes were caused by distracted driving behaviors, leading to 11,005 injuries and 101 fatalities. (NDOT)

  • On average, 12 people are killed and 1,376 injured in 4,001 crashes each year due to distracted driving in Nebraska. (NDOT)

  • Distracted driving accounted for approximately 8% of the total traffic crashes in Nebraska for 2017 whereas speeding accounted for approximately 2%. (NDOT)

  • Since 2008, the number of distracted driving related crashes has increased by more than 1,000 from 3,466 in 2008 to 4,699 in 2017, the highest number in over 10 years. (NDOT)

  • 660,000 – Estimated number of drivers using electronic devices while driving during the day – National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. (NHTSA)

  • 3,450 - Number of people killed by distracted driving in 2015. (NHTSA)

  • NHTSA and the National Safety Council believe that only half of fatal crashes tied to known mobile phone use are tracked as distracted driving.  

  • According to AAA, 2/3 of drivers ages 19 to 24 have read a text message or email while behind the wheel in the last 30 days.

  • Sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving blind at 55-mph for the length of an entire football field. (Virginia Tech Transportation Institute [VTTI])

Nebraska's Laws on Distracted Driving

Nebraska's Revised Statute 60-6,179.01.

Use of handheld wireless communication device; prohibited acts; enforcement; violation; penalty.

(1) This section does not apply to an operator of a commercial motor vehicle if section 60-6,179.02 applies.
(2) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (3) of this section, no person shall use a handheld wireless communication device to read a written communication, manually type a written communication, or send a written communication while operating a motor vehicle which is in motion.
(3) The prohibition in subsection (2) of this section does not apply to:
(a) A person performing his or her official duties as a law enforcement officer, a firefighter, an ambulance driver, or an emergency medical technician; or
(b) A person operating a motor vehicle in an emergency situation.
(4) Enforcement of this section by state or local law enforcement agencies shall be accomplished only as a secondary action when a driver of a motor vehicle has been cited or charged with a traffic violation or some other offense.
(5) Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a traffic infraction. Any person who is found guilty of a traffic infraction under this section shall be assessed points on his or her motor vehicle operator's license pursuant to section 60-4,182 and shall be fined:
(a) Two hundred dollars for the first offense;
(b) Three hundred dollars for a second offense; and
(c) Five hundred dollars for a third and subsequent offense.
(6) For purposes of this section:
(a) Commercial motor vehicle has the same meaning as in section 75-362;
(b)(i) Handheld wireless communication device means any device that provides for written communication between two or more parties and is capable of receiving, displaying, or transmitting written communication.
(ii) Handheld wireless communication device includes, but is not limited to, a mobile or cellular telephone, a text messaging device, a personal digital assistant, a pager, or a laptop computer.
(iii) Handheld wireless communication device does not include an electronic device that is part of the motor vehicle or permanently attached to the motor vehicle or a handsfree wireless
communication device; and
(c) Written communication includes, but is not limited to, a text message, an instant message, electronic mail, and Internet web sites.

Cell Phone Use Best Practice: 

No driver should use a cell phone while driving. This includes reading, writing or sending text or electronic messages, surfing the web, talking on a handsfree or hand held device and voice to text. All drivers should turn off cell phones while operating a motor vehicle.

A reminder that it is illegal to text and drive.

Help Make a Change - Contact Your Senator!

Speaking out is the easiest and most effective way for citizens to make an impact in national and local politics. Advocacy is necessary to let Nebraska lawmakers know that NSCN and many Nebraskans support stricter laws and tougher penalties. Experts from National Safety Council, Nebraska often testify before the legislature on bills concerning roadway safety. Contact your senator to turn your passive participation into active resistance. Calling is the most effective way to influence your representative. If you don't know who your Senator is or their contact information, click the button below. 

Find Your Senator
What Employers Can Do To Help

Distractions now join alcohol and speeding as leading factors in fatal and serious injury crashes. According to the National Safety Council, 28% of motor vehicle crashes involve the use of cell phones, resulting in approximately 1.6 million crashes annually. Whether on the clock or off, crashes can affect your business, resulting in missed work and affecting employer costs, including:

  • Insurance and Liability Premiums
  • Workers’ Compensation/ Medical and Disability Contributions
  • Vehicle or Property Damage
  • Crash-Related Legal Expenses
  • Lost Productivity 

Three steps to help protect employees from distracted driving:

1. Create a Policy

Develop a formal, written policy stating the company's position on mobile device use and other distractions while driving. Download a free policy kit below. 

2. Communicate the Importance

Effective policies are communicated often and in various forms. Send regular messaging to employees via emails, newsletters, social media and training sessions to reinforce the policy. Free materials are available via the Become an Advocate tab.

3. Lead by Example

Company leadership must promote the desired safe driving behavior in order to create a company culture where cell phone use while driving is unacceptable. Let employees know that while they are on the road, no phone call or email is more important than their safety.

Implement a Cell Phone Ban

Businesses without policies prohibiting cell phone use while driving are exposing their employees and themselves to increased crash risk and liability. The National Safety Council recommends policies prohibiting both hands-free and handheld devices for all employees. 

A corporate cell phone ban might ask employees to: Turn off wireless phones or other devices before starting the car. Inform clients, associates and business partners that calls will be returned when no longer driving. Pull over to a safe location and put the vehicle in park if a call must be made.

Read why the world's largest manufacturer of fiberglass and related products chose to implement a distracted driving policy banning cell phone use for all employees.

OWENS CORNING CORPORATION CASE STUDY

sample cell phone policy kit is available from National Safety Council.

Educate Employees

Promote distraction free driving as a way to ensure a safe workplace and protect employee from preventable injury. NSCN recommends the following resources to help create a culture of safety.

  • A distracted driving presentation is a great way to get started on raising awareness of the dangers of this deadly habit. To schedule a presentation, please contact us.
  •  Use free educational materials under our Become an Advocate tab to promote safe driving habits among employees. 

Donate

If you'd like to support the National Safety Council, Nebraska's mission to bring awareness to the dangers of distracted driving, click the Donate Now button. 100% of all donations will be used to educate and inspire Nebraskans to make a change. 

A special Thank You to the sponsors of this campaign:

 

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