The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has statistics which indicate that hundreds of thousands of people are injured and thousands are killed each year due to a distracted driver.
While 38 states have made it illegal to use a cell phone while driving, and the National Safety Counsel has determined 25 percent of all crashes are related to cell phone use, there are other ways a driver can be distracted, including: eating and drinking, talking to passengers, grooming, reading, using a GPS, or adjusting the radio.
The human cost of distracted driving is staggering but the financial cost should not be overlooked. According to a Harvard risk analysis study, the estimated annual cost of crashes caused by cell phone use to be $43 billion, which amounts to $3.58 billion each month.
The indirect cost is great as well, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, $17.5 million has been allotted for fiscal year 2013 to provide grants to states to enact and enforce distracted driving laws. These grants will allow states to establish the best practices for enforcement programs.
The best way to fight this distracted-driver epidemic is by “being the change you want to see in the world,” and pay attention to the road. There is no phone call, no fast food and no radio program worth the hassle, let along, a lost life, that can come with an accident.