The Pediatric Trauma Injury Prevention Program at Children's Hospital is addressing distracted driving among teenagers through a data-driven, research-based program. The Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services and the All-State Foundation provide funding for the program.
Motor vehicle crashes (MVC) are the leading cause of death among U.S. teenagers, and distracted driving as a whole is on the rise. The risk of MVCs is higher among 16 to 19 year-olds than among any other age group.
The younger, inexperienced drivers under 20 years-old have the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes. Distractions in driving include use of cell phone for talking and texting, food, beverages, and music.
- In 2011, at least 23% of auto collisions involved cell phones. That's 1.3 million crashes.
- 13% of drivers age 18-20 involved in car wrecks admitted to texting or talking on their mobile devices at the time of the crash.
- 77% of young adult drivers are very or somewhat confident that they can safely text while driving.
- 55% of young adult drivers claim it's easy to text while they drive.
- A recent Pew study showed the cell phone as a major source of distraction while driving. More than 34% of teens 16-17 years-old in the Pew survey indicated that they texted while driving.
- In 2009, more than 5,400 people died in crashes that involved a distracted driver.
Our Teen Motor Vehicle Safety Program has two initiatives:
BE IN THE ZONE—Be Smart, Drive Smart
BE IN THE ZONE—Be Smart, Drive Smart is a hospital-based, interactive program where teenagers experience an up-close look at what would happen as a result of unsafe driving practices.
BE IN THE ZONE—Turn Off Your Phone
BE IN THE ZONE—Turn Off Your Phone is a school-based program that encourages teenagers to take the lessons they learned in the hospital and translate it into a yearlong anti-texting campaign in their own school.
© 2013 Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt