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CHP acts against adult driver distraction

November 11, 2018

Distracted driving is a problem across all age groups. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) will address the challenges of distracted adult drivers, who are often role models for younger drivers, with the aid of a year-long grant. The Adult Distracted Driving (ADD) program, which started October 1, combines education and enforcement.

Each year, thousands of people are killed by distracted drivers and thousands more are injured. A change of driving habits can help stop distracted driving. The statewide ADD program has been launched in partnership with the California Office of Traffic Safety.

Drivers perceive that distracted driving is an increasing problem, ahead of traffic congestion, aggressive drivers, drugs, and drunk driving, a study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety revealed. Many adults also report using their cell phones illegally while driving, but do change their behavior in response to education or receiving a citation, the AAA Foundation has found. With the ADD grant, the CHP will complete a minimum of 60 distracted driving enforcement operations and at least 480 traffic safety presentations statewide by the end of September 2019.

“Your phone should not be your focus when you are driving. Your safety and the well-being of those around you are more important,” CHP Commissioner Warren Stanley said. “Nothing on your phone is worth endangering a life when you drive.”

Many distractions interfere with safe driving, but cell phones remain the top distraction. Using a cell phone, especially texting or emailing, is the most dangerous. Other distractions include eating, grooming, talking to passengers, operating a navigation system, and adjusting the radio.

Driving requires undivided attention. The ADD grant will help drivers understand how distracted driving in any form puts everyone on the road at risk.

Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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