Teen Driving Knowing the Risks

AAA is leading the charge to reduce distracted driving on our roads.

Distracted driving is a growing problem among motorists. While cell phone use is one of the top reasons, there are many visual and mental distractions that affect your ability to safely operate a vehicle, including the built-in infotainment system, navigation apps, eating and drinking, and other passengers in your car!

AAA is researching how to make vehicles safer, promoting laws to reduce distracted driving behavior, and developing educational campaigns about the dangers. Read on to learn more!

Distracted Driving

How Distracted Are You?

"Drivers spend more than half their time focused on things other than driving" — AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety

Every day, motorists who read or send a text while driving take their eyes off the road for up to 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that's like driving the entire length of a football field with your eyes shut. 

Texting - along with other activities like phone calls, eating, drinking, setting your GPS or working your car's entertainment system - takes your mind and your eyes off the road. 


Troubling Numbers
 
Did you know in-vehicle infotainment systems require more visual and cognitive attention?
They can require up to 40 seconds to program navigation.
 
 
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Don't Drive Intexticated

Texting while driving is one of the biggest dangers on the road. 
According to a 2017 Deloitte study, Americans check their phones an average of 47 times per day. Texting is the most frequently used smartphone function.

Watch our Public Service Video Announcement about texting while driving. 

 

 

 

Do as I say, not as I do.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that almost 90 percent of drivers believe distracted driving is a bigger problem today than ever before.
However, the vast majority of those same drivers report engaging in distracted driving behaviors themselves.  

Learn how to prevent distracted driving, get the latest AAA research, review your state's distracted driving laws, and more.

AAA Reveals Latest Research on Vehicle Infotainment Systems

A recent in-depth study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the University of Utah compared the distractive effect of built-in infotainment systems of vehicles to Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto. While all systems added mental and visual challenges for drivers, the built-in systems were significantly worse in increasing the demands on drivers while behind-the-wheel.  The Apple and Google systems required less time and attention, therefore allowing drivers to focus on the road.

The interface design of built-in systems – particularly ones with additional menus and options on touch screens – requires more attention from the driver, and many of these same systems don’t block available features while the vehicle is in motion.

 

Effective February 23, Massachusetts law prohibits drivers from using any hand-held device while operating a motor vehicle.

Massachusetts is the latest Northeast state to enact legislation prohibiting the use of electronic devices while operating a vehicle. The new law requires motorists to use hands-free technology for cell phones and navigation systems. Any driver holding a phone in their hands while behind the wheel can be pulled over and fined $100 for the first offense. Subsequent violations result in higher fines and possible insurance surcharges.

Frequently Asked Questions about the new Massachusetts law

Only hands-free technology can be used. This includes:

·       Phone mount on windshield, dashboard or center console

·       Wired or Bluetooth® earpiece

·       Bluetooth speaker

·       Voice-activated smartphone apps

·       Bluetooth connection to vehicle

Any hand-held electronic device is banned. This includes your cell phone, navigation device or any other wireless device. Operators cannot read or view a text or look at images or video unless what is being viewed on the device is helping with navigation and the device is mounted in an appropriate location. They cannot make phone calls unless they are able to do so without holding the phone, using technology such as Bluetooth.
If a police officer observes you holding a phone or wireless device, you will be pulled over and fined $100 for your first offense.  Second offenders will be subjected to a $250 fine and be required to take a distracted driving prevention course; third offenders will face a $500 fine and possible insurance surcharges. 
The safest thing to do is not use your phone at all while driving. Place it in the trunk or back seat to avoid temptation, set it to “do not disturb” and turn off the sound, or activate the “Do Not Disturb While Driving” feature found on Apple’s operating system. If you use a navigation device or a phone app, set it before you leave and attach the phone to your phone mount. Remember, even holding your phone while stopped at an intersection or red light is a violation. If you must use your phone or set your navigation, you have to pull over out of active travel lanes and completely stop your vehicle. The law provides for limited exceptions, such as the use of a mobile electronic device in response to an emergency.
Watch our informative video to learn more.
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