In 2017, 28% of all traffic crashes in Kansas were attributed to driver inattention or distractions. April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and the Kansas Department of Transportation and law enforcement agencies across the state are working to educate drivers of the dangers of driving while distracted. While this is most often associated with cell phone use, many other situations can cause distractions in the car. Interacting with children, eating food, using other electronic devices, and even things happening outside the vehicle contributed to more than 16,000 distracted driving crashes in 2017. Many people may not know that distracted driving can be a ticketable offense in Kansas. For example, any texting, social media or internet activity on your phone can lead to a minimum $60 ticket plus court costs. However, the worst result of distracted driving would be to cause an injury or death.
Law enforcement officers also encourage Kansans to “just drive” when they are behind the wheel. If your attention is anywhere other than the road, you’re driving distracted, and you’re driving dangerous. Drivers can minimize distractions by turning off electronic devices and keeping both eyes on the road ahead at all times. They also encourage passengers to hold their driver accountable and to not be a distraction themselves.