Last week the Floyd County Sheriff’s Office held a “Thumbs Off: No Texting While Driving” campaign with the sheriff and staffers visiting Georgia schools to bring the message to teens.
Statistics show that 11 teens die every day because of texting while driving, the sheriff said, adding that the activity is both unlawful and dangerous.
According to the Georgia Department of Transportation, distracted driving accounts for the largest number of roadway fatalities, and an AT&T study shows that seven in 10 people use their smartphones while driving.
AT&T’ named a new campaign push the “It Can Wait Team,” and launched an awareness program whereby students received a thumb band reminding them not to text while driving.
A recent study conducted by the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL) found that drivers who text are far more dangerous than drunk drivers. TRL recruited 19 drivers and had them perform driving simulation tests to see how their driving would be affected by reading and typing text messages. The results showed the drivers who were distracted by text messages, either by reading or writing them, had slower reaction times by 35 percent. By comparison, drunk drivers displayed a 12 percent decrease in reaction time.
Since July 2010, Georgia has had a law prohibiting all texting while driving.
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