It is a well-known fact that April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Well, maybe not well-known—yet! The Tennessee Highway Safety Office teamed up with the Department of Safety and Homeland Security this month to spread a message: Thumbs Down to Texting and Driving.
This month, the Highway Safety Office is asking Tennessee residents to use social media to help spread awareness on the hazards of texting and driving. People can take part by posting a selfie with their thumbs down and use the hashtag “#ThumbsDownTN.” Just don’t post it while driving!
Distracted Driving is a Big Problem in Tennessee
Though many people assume distracted driving is only a problem with teenagers, they’re wrong. Distracted driving is a Tennessee problem. A recent analysis shows there is no age group is particularly prone to texting and driving. According to a Public Information Officer with the Tennessee Highway Safety Office, the issue is people know texting and driving is a dangerous behavior, yet people ignore that knowledge.
Moreover, distracted driving is not just limited to texting. It applies to every type of inattentive driving, which includes:
- Eating while driving
- Grooming or putting on makeup while driving
- Talking to other passengers while driving
- Using other devices, such as a radio or GPS while driving
Will the Thumbs Down Campaign Will Decrease the Number of Distracted Drivers?
According to The Knoxville Focus, Tennessee had the highest number of distracted driving accidents compared to every any other state in 2015. In total, there were 22,964 distracted driving accidents that resulted in the death of 51 people. On an average day, 25 people are injured in an accident caused by drivers who are texting while driving.
The Department of Safety and Homeland Security released a statement reminding Tennessee residents that any kind of messaging while driving is illegal in Tennessee, and those who break the law will receive a minimum $50 fine. Hopefully drivers will give texting while driving a thumbs down and decrease the number of distracted driving accidents.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28