Efforts to stop texting and driving: do they work?

We have all read statistics about texting and driving. We know that both experienced and novice drivers do it. We know distracted driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, which we discussed inĀ this article on our website. We know there are laws in Tennessee prohibiting the behavior. We know texting behind the wheel contributes to hundreds of thousands of accidents every year. Unfortunately, we also know that drivers all across the state continue to text and drive despite the fact that it is incredibly dangerous.

Over the years, creative and innovative attempts have been made to stop distracted driving. These educational, marketing and technological campaigns have taken different approaches to sending the message that drivers should not text and drive and some may be more effective than listing off statistics.

For example, a group called Responsible Young Drivers in Belgium put out this video that has received millions of views. It shows young drivers at a driving school being told they need to be able to text and drive in order to get their license, which was not true. However, believing it was true, the students try to drive and send texts on their phone only to learn very quickly that they cannot do both. As one student says, “It’s too dangerous.”

Phone companies are also trying to change driver behavior and make the roads safer. Many companies have apps users can download to lock a phone while a person is driving. Locking the phone takes away the temptation to read or respond to a text.

We also see anti-distracted driving messages in commercials, on billboards and in our social media news feeds.

While these efforts have gotten a lot of attention, they have not lead to a dramatic decrease in texting and driving. In fact, thousands of distracted driving accidents still happen every day, according to reports. It is possible that over time, the message will be better received but as it stands, distraction behind the wheel is still a huge problem.

In the event that you or a loved one is hurt in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you can send your own powerful message by holding that person legally and financially accountable for the damages caused by their dangerous actions.