WASHINGTON — Federal safety regulators are kicking off Distracted Driving Awareness month with a national advertising campaign and law-enforcement crackdown.
"Drivers caught texting or using their mobile devices when behind the wheel will be issued citations in states with distracted-driving bans," said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in a statement on Tuesday.
In 2014, 3,179 people were killed and 431,000 were injured in crashes involving distracted drivers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, according to federal statistics.
"People need to understand the potential price of distracted driving," said Mark Rosekind, NHTSA administrator, in a statement. "The cost of a ticket is nothing, compared to the irrevocable cost of taking someone's life."
The feds note that distracted driving is not limited to teenagers.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, at any given moment in 2014, during daylight hours, more than 587,000 vehicles were being driven by someone using a handheld cell phone.
Edmunds says: We need to change our behavior behind the wheel. April is a good month to start.