Don’t Drive Intoxicated — Don’t Drive Intexticated

AAA is using this month to educate drivers on the risks of distracted driving

Frederick, MD (KB) The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that 40 people died in 40 distracted driving crashes in Maryland in 2018. This month, AAA Mid-Atlantic is urging drivers to take the precautions necessary to avoid distracted driving. Spokeswoman, Ragina Ali, explains that even with your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel, you are not safe unless your mind focuses on the drive.

“We at AAA Mid-Atlantic last year launched a campaign called, ‘Don’t Drive Intoxicated — Don’t Drive Intexticated,’ sort of making a play on the traffic safety ramifications,” says Ali. “You totally understand the dangers of driving while impaired under the influence of alcohol or drugs, but the reality is the ramifications of driving distracted and not focusing on the roadways as you’re driving are equally dangerous.”

AAA’s Top Tips to Avoid Distractions Whild Driving are:

– Prepare for your drive. Set vehicle systems like GPS, seats, mirrors, climate controls and sound systems before hitting the road. Decide on your route and check traffic conditions ahead of time. Please, finish dressing and personal grooming at home — before you get on the road.

– Don’t Drive Intoxicated, Don’t Drive Intexticated. The consequences of alcohol-impaired driving and texting while driving could be the same. Put aside electronic distractions and never use text messaging, email, video games or internet functions, including those built into the vehicle, while driving. Stow your smartphone away, turn it to airplane mode, or activate call/text blocking features.

– Stay focused. Do not let anything divert your attention. Be sure to actively scan the road, use your mirrors, and watch out for pedestrians and cyclists. If you have passengers, enlist their help as a “designated texter.” Ask them to answer your calls, respond to texts and program the navigation.

Violating Maryland’s distracted driving laws is not only unsafe, but can also be costly. The use of a text messaging device while driving is prohibited. The use of a hand-held telephone is prohibited for all drivers, and the use of a wireless communicated device for drivers under 18 is also prohibited.

Glancing away from the road for just two seconds doubles the risk of a crash. Join AAA’s safety campaign and help put an end to distracted driving.