More people die in motor vehicle crashes on Independence Day than any other day of the year, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Whether you’re running last minute errands for your backyard barbecue, or on your way in a fully loaded family vehicle to watch the fireworks, it can be easy for drivers to get distracted while driving on the Fourth.
An estimated 40,000 people died in car crashes in 2016, marking a 6 percent increase over 2015 and a 14 percent increase over 2014 – the most dramatic two-year escalation since 1964. In addition, 2017 was the second consecutive year that motor vehicle deaths topped 40,000, according to preliminary estimates from the National Safety Council.
“Improving driver focus and safety is a longtime commitment for Allstate,” said Field Vice President, Mark Testa. “No one is immune to risky driving and that’s why Allstate is bringing awareness to the dangers of distracted driving to prevent further tragedy,” said Testa. “Simple actions like buckling up, slowing down and limiting distractions can help save lives.”
So as more drivers take to the roads this summer, Allstate offers ‘4 for the 4th‘ – four safe-driving tips that drivers can use to help stay safe on the road.
Tips for Distraction-Free Driving:
- Put your cell phone and other mobile devices out of reach to eliminate the desire to check them while driving.
- Plan ahead by inputting navigation directions and sending messages before leaving for your destination.
- Avoid listening to loud music and use caution when engaging with other passengers in your vehicle, which are often unintended distractions.
- Download Allstate’s free app, Drivewise. Drivewise uses telematics to personalize the auto experience by considering driving behaviors such as excessive speeding, braking quickly and what time of day you drive (i.e., during rush hour or late night). In the same way a fitness tracker helps improve your healthy habits like movement and sleep, telematics identifies driving habits and offers tips to improve. Other benefits of Drivewise include post-trip feedback and monetary rewards.
Texting may be the most dangerous distraction, though, according to the NHTSA. Reading or sending a text tends to take about five seconds — at 55 mph, that’s like driving an entire football field with your eyes closed, the site says.
- Texting while driving
- Reaching for your phone
- Talking to another passenger
- Turning knobs in your car, such as adjusting your temperature controls
- Checking and adjusting your GPS/navigation system
- Adjusting the radio station or infotainment system
- Reaching for objects