Distracted driving is a dangerous activity and is prevalent on Nebraska's roadways. In Nebraska there were 4,455 distracted driving crashes with over 1,500 injuries in 2016. The number of crashes is 29% higher than just 5 years earlier.
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.
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.
Ashley Wooden | 1995-2007 | Omaha, NE
Clifford Endorf | 1968-1991 | Fairbury, NE
Paul Troupe | 1991-2014 | Omaha, NE
Cady Reynolds | 1990-2007 | Omaha, NE
660,000 – Estimated number of drivers using electronic devices while driving during the day – National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
3,477 - Number of people killed by distracted driving in 2015 (NHTSA)
391,000 - Number of people injured 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 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.
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
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.
A sample cell phone policy kit is available from National Safety Council.
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.