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ACR-71 Distracted Driving Awareness Month.(2019-2020)

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Assembly Concurrent Resolution
No. 71

Introduced by Assembly Member Frazier

April 22, 2019

Relative to distracted driving.


ACR 71, as introduced, Frazier. Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
This measure would proclaim April 2019 as Distracted Driving Awareness Month in California and call for awareness of the distracted driving problem and support for programs and policies to reduce the incidence of distracted driving.
Fiscal Committee: NO  

WHEREAS, A 2013 statewide traffic safety survey conducted by the California Office of Traffic Safety reported that more than 36 percent of Californians surveyed thought texting or talking on a cell phone while driving posed the biggest safety problem on California roadways; and
WHEREAS, Distracted driving is defined as any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving; and
WHEREAS, Distracted driving takes three primary forms:
(a) Visual distraction: tasks that require the driver to look away from the roadway to visually obtain information.
(b) Manual distraction: tasks that require the driver to take a hand off the steering wheel and manipulate a device.
(c) Cognitive distraction: tasks that are defined as the mental workload associated with a task that involves thinking about something other than the task of driving; and
WHEREAS, In 2015, 59.6 percent of California drivers surveyed stated that they had been hit or nearly hit by a driver who was talking or texting on a cell phone; and
WHEREAS, Seventy-three percent of drivers 18 to 20 years of age admit to texting while driving; and
WHEREAS, In 2014, 10 percent of all drivers 15 to 19 years of age who were involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crash. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of a crash; and
WHEREAS, In 2013, nearly 48 percent of drivers surveyed said that texting while driving is the most serious distraction for drivers; and
WHEREAS, In 2014, 3,179 people were killed and 431,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers; and
WHEREAS, To read or type the average text takes 4.6 seconds. Just three seconds of texting while driving at 65 mph is equal to driving 100 yards, or the length of a football field, blindfolded; and
WHEREAS, Engaging in visual-manual subtasks, such as reaching for a phone, dialing, and texting, associated with the use of handheld phones and other portable devices increased the risk of getting into a crash by three times; and
WHEREAS, Text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted; and
WHEREAS, According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, only about one out of five young drivers think that texting makes no difference to their driving performance. Sixty-eight percent of young drivers 18 to 20 years of age are willing to answer incoming phone calls on some, most, or all driving trips; and
WHEREAS, Parents who engage in distracting behaviors while driving more frequently have teens who do the same. According to a 2012 teen driver distraction study conducted jointly by the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute and Toyota, teens send or read text messages once a trip 26 times more often than their parents think they do; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature proclaims April 2019 as Distracted Driving Awareness Month in California and calls upon residents, government agencies, business leaders, hospitals, schools, and public and private institutions within the state to promote awareness of the distracted driving problem and to support programs and policies to reduce the incidence of distracted driving in California and nationwide; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.