With April being National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, the Texas Department of Transportation launched their statewide “Talk, Text, Crash” campaign at SMU Thursday, Apr. 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.[pullquote align=”full” cite=”WATCH: Happenings on the Hilltop: Texting and Driving” link=”http://www.smudailycampus.com/smu-tv/watch-happenings-on-the-hilltop-texting-and-driving” color=”#034174″ size=”14″][/pullquote]
During this time, students walking around SMU’s main campus encountered a giant, car-sized smart phone that appears to have been smashed in a car crash and a distracted driving simulator that allows people to take a seat behind the wheel and experience how receiving a phone call, replying to a text or sending an email can greatly impair their driving.
The Texas Department of Transportation hopes that by providing students and faculty on SMU’s campus the opportunity to experience and hear about what fatal distracted driving can do to an individual and family, people will think twice before picking up their phone for a phone call or text message when behind the wheel.
With about 20 percent of Texas’ drivers admitting to reading and sending text messages and emails while behind the wheel there are more than 100,000 statewide traffic crashes involving distracted drivers.
“Last year, driver distractions killed 463 Texans and seriously injured another 3,076 Texans,” said Texas Transportation Commissioner Jeff Moseley, according to a Texas Department of Transportation press release.
“Texans are dying on our roads simply because some drivers cannot wait until they’re stopped to check their email or make a phone call. That one text, post or phone call is not worth injuring or killing yourself, or someone else.”