Distracted Driving Spikes As More People Return To MA Roadways
Have you ever been involved in a fender-bender? C'mon, I know I can't be the only one! I know that in at least one instance where scrapes, dings, and dents occurred, I was definitely focused on something else other than driving. You know what they say, "There is a good chance an accident brought you into this world. Don't let one take you out."
As the Commonwealth continues to reopen, and more and more drivers return to our roadways, statistics have shown an increase in the number of citations and warnings being issued by police for distracted driving.
Seriously, since the start of 2021 right through the month of April, the numbers have snowballed. This past January, police officers in Massachusetts issued 151 warnings and citations for distracted driving, Then, the numbers take a little jump in February to 405. All of a sudden, big jump for March to 3,515! Last month? The number for April is pretty staggering...Ready for this? 10,276!!!! That's almost 70 times as many in January. (All numbers courtesy of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation)
In essence, "distracted driving" is the description label given to the practice of driving a vehicle while engaged in another activity, typically one that involves using a mobile phone or other electronic devices.
A law went into effect in February 2020 prohibiting the use of any electronic device while driving unless it was in hands-free mode. Starting in April 2020, you received a fine if you got caught.
Acting Transportation Secretary Jamey Tesler had this to say on the matter recently:
This is an important reminder for everybody not to engage in distracted driving, to put down your phones...We're excited we're taking the next step in opening, but we do encourage people to drive safely, and we really want to focus on the critical role that avoiding distracted driving can play in keeping the commonwealth, other drivers and yourself safe.
I always remember something my dad told me a long time ago(Dad had a knack for saying things in a funny way so that you would remember), "It takes thousands of bolts to assemble an automobile, but just one nut to scatter it all over the road." Thanks, Dad.