An estimated 6,000 people were killed last year in crashes involving a “distracted or inattentive driver,” according to new data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). More than 500,000 people were also injured in such crashes, the data shows.
“Every single time someone takes their eyes or their focus off the road – even for just a few seconds – they put their lives and the lives of others in danger,” Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, according to a news release. “Distracted driving is unsafe, irresponsible and in a split second, its consequences can be devastating.
“We now know that the worst offenders are the youngest, least experienced drivers,” LaHood said. “Unfortunately though, the problem doesn’t end there. Distracted driving occurs across all age groups and all modes of transportation, from cars to buses and trucks to trains. We must work together to find solutions that will prevent crashes caused by driver distraction.”