Michigan State Police are cracking down on distracted driving. April 11th marks the beginning of a distracted driving mobilization period across Michigan.
Officials said distracted driving crashes increased by more than fifty percent in Michigan from 2016 to 2017. There was a 57 percent increase in accidents and a 67 percent increase in distracted driving fatalities.
Distracted driving is anything that takes your focus off of the road. Officials said cell phones are a big distraction, but there are many others.
John Ross is with the Office of Highway Safety Planning.
“If your kids are in the backseat and you are turning around trying to deal with them. If you are fiddling with the radio, even if your mind just wanders and you aren’t focused on the task of driving. Anything that takes you away from that task of driving is considered a distraction.”
April is distracted driving awareness month. Ross said he hopes
the mobilization period will help decrease the number of crashes.
“Hoping that people get the message and learn to wait until they get to where they are going or pull over to the side if they have to take a call or have to send a text message. Do it that way. Don’t do it while you are trying to drive.”
The mobilization period will start April 11th and end on April 15th. During that time police across the state will be sending out patrols looking for distracted drivers.