Motor Vehicle: Child Passenger Safety | Teen Driving | Older Adults | Distracted Driving | Motorcycle | Impaired Driving
Motor Vehicle Injury Prevention
Motor vehicle injuries are the leading cause of deaths for Arkansans ages 1-34, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Motor vehicle safety covers the age spectrum to include Child Passenger Safety, Teen Driving and Older Adult Driving. Additional injury prevention efforts focus on Motorcycle Safety, Impaired Driving and Distracted Driving.
Child Passenger Safety (CPS)
Child passenger safety emphasizes the correct and consistent use of proper passenger restraint in children ages 0-13, including children with special needs. 90% of child passenger seats have not been installed correctly. CPS includes training classes to certify Child Passenger Safety Technicians throughout Arkansas.
Motor vehicle crashes are also the leading cause of death for teens. While learning to drive is a big step towards becoming an adult, keep in mind that teens are not yet adults. New teen drivers need time and practice to be safe behind the wheel. Teens and others on the road can be protected by guiding teens through a step-by-step approach to safer driving. Arkansas has a graduated driver licensing (GDL) law that allows novice drivers to improve skills under the safest conditions, while limiting nighttime driving, restricting cell phone use and limiting the number of passengers allowed for teen drivers.
Older Adult Driving
Older adult driving safety addresses some of the special issues of adults aged 65 and older. Older adult driving resources include injury prevention programs by the American Association for Retired Peoples (AARP), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and the American Medical Association (AMA).
Drivers may become distracted by many things while on the road, but cell phones are the biggest problem. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 5,474 people were killed in crashes involving driver distraction, and an estimated 448,000 were injured in the United States in 2009. Paul Davidson was a 41 year old man from Jonesboro who was killed as a result of a crash with a vehicle whose driver admitted he was texting while driving. Arkansas House Bill 1013, more commonly known as “Paul’s Law” after Paul Davidson, was passed on October 1, 2009 and prohibits the act of texting while driving in Arkansas for all drivers.
Impaired driving is described as driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Drivers in Arkansas are considered to be alcohol-impaired when they have blood-alcohol contents (BACs) of .08g/dL or higher, although lower BACs can also be contributing factors in crashes. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), alcohol/drug-related fatalities account for 44% of all motor vehicle crash-related fatalities in the United States and in 2010 more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-related crashes.
Arkansas ranks as the 6th highest state in the nation for motorcycle fatalities, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Motorcycle safety programs are targeted at both motorcycle riders and car drivers to raise awareness and safe practices.
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