With the holidays quickly approaching, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet’s Office of Highway Safety is providing Thanksgiving travelers important lifesaving reminders – buckle up and put the phone down.
Over the past decade, distracted driving has become one of the leading causes of vehicle crashes on our nation’s roads. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, while anything that takes a driver’s eyes off the road, hands off the wheel or mind off the task of driving is a hazard, texting and the use of phone while driving is especially risky because it combines all three types of distraction – visual, manual and cognitive.
Data from the KOHS shows that each year in Kentucky, distracted driving results in more than 50,000 crashes, more than 15,000 injuries and approximately 200 deaths.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, when worn correctly, seat belts reduce the risk of death by 45 percent for front-seat vehicle occupants and by 60 percent for pickup truck, SUV and minivan occupants. Properly fastened seat belts contact the strongest parts of the body, such as the chest, hips and shoulders. A seat belt spreads the force of a crash over a wide area of the body, putting less stress on any one part, and allows the body to slow down with the crash, extending the time when crash forces are felt by the occupant.
According to KOHS, each year in Kentucky, more than half of those killed in motor vehicles are not wearing a seat belt.