Sheriff Russell Issues Warning on Distracted Driving

Distracted driving has become a major factor in the cause of automobile crashes on our nation’s highways.  In 2012, over 3,300 people were killed in crashes that were attributed to distracted driving.  The leading cause of teenage deaths in our country is automobile crashes. At least 11% of drivers under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were determined to be distracted at the time of the crash.  Another 36% of teen drivers say they have been in a near crash due to their own or someone else driving distracted.

As children grow up, they become very aware of their parents driving habits.  We, as parents, often do not realize the impact we have on their learning process.  Approximately 70-75% of teenage drivers say their parents driving habits were the biggest influence on their own habits.  Over 70% of these teens say they also learned their distracted driving habits from their parents.

Sheriff Jay Russell issues this public service announcement and video to remind all drivers of the dangers of distracted driving.  “We all know texting or using social media while driving is against the law.  The penalties are substantial, but the intent to save lives is the most important goal of the law, not fines or penalties” advised Sheriff Russell.   Sheriff Russell also reminds us, as parents, of the important role we play in teaching our children to drive safely, obeying all traffic laws.  “Make a difference.  Put forth a conscientious effort to avoid distracted driving and set the example for our future drivers to follow”, he added.