BPD Officer Proud to Participate in Public Service Announcement Designed to Educate Drivers about the Dangers of Distracted Driving
For those who didn’t know, the month of April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and in an effort to shine a spotlight on the inherent dangers of distracted driving, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS), Office of Grants & Research-Highway Safety Division along with law enforcement representatives from all over New England, including our very own Boston Police Officer Kim Tavares, have teamed up to create a 30 second public service video, titled ‘Just Drive’, in which Officer Tavares and law enforcement officers from around the region make a compelling, heartfelt plea about the dangers of distracted driving and the importance of refraining from non-driving activities like talking on the phone or texting when behind the wheel of your car.
Said Tavares, “Too many people think it’s okay to talk on the phone or text while driving when it absolutely isn’t. All too often, in our role as police officers, we see motorists driving around looking down at their phones, instead, of looking up at the road in front of them. Obviously, it’s a recipe for disaster and just a matter of time before somebody gets hurt.”
In the past few years, according to traffic safety experts, the number of motor vehicle fatalities and pedestrian accidents have been on the rise as a result of distracted driving. Distracted driving occurs when motorists engage in non-driving/attention-diminishing activities like talking or texting on your phone, checking social media apps, eating or fiddling with your navigation system. The aforementioned are all examples of distracted driving activities that limit your ability to safely operate your vehicle while simultaneously increasing your chances of hurting, harming or injuring a fellow motorist or pedestrian.
Said Tavares, “We’re trying to change people’s behavior and perception of distracted driving. The message is clear. Fewer distractions means fewer accidents. And the more we can get drivers to understand that, the safer our highways and roadways are going to be for all of us.”
The video you’re about to see features police officers from all six New England States who have come together to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. The obvious goal is to make our roadways safer and, to achieve that goal, the officers in the video believe they have two words of advice (Just Drive) that could make all the difference the next time you get behind the wheel of your car.
To see the video in its entirety, please click on link below:
Top 10 Tips for Decreasing Driver Distractions:
1. Turn it off. Turn your phone off or switch to silent mode before you get in the car. Or better yet, put the phone away in a place it cannot be accessed while driving.
2. Spread the word. Set up a special message to tell callers that you are driving and you'll get back to them as soon as possible, or sign up for a service that offers this.
3. Pull over. If you need to make a call, pull over to a safe area first.
4. Use your passengers. Ask a passenger to communicate for you.
5. X the text. Don't ever text and drive, surf the web or read your email while driving. It is dangerous and against the law in most states.
6. Know the law. Familiarize yourself with state and local laws before you get in the car.
7. Prepare. Start your GPS or review maps and directions before you start to drive. If you need help when you are on the road, ask a passenger to help or pull over to a safe location to review the map and/or directions.
8. Secure your pets. Pets can be a big distraction in the car. Always secure your pets properly before you start to drive.
9. Keep the kids safe. Pull over to a safe location to address situations with your children in the car.
10. Focus on the task at hand. Refrain from smoking, eating, drinking, reading and any other activity that takes your mind and eyes off the road.