Traffic Fatalities On the Rise - Is Texting While Driving the Culprit?

by mphippen 21. October 2012 11:44

Why are traffic fatalities going up? This is a fair question to ask, particularly since we’ve enjoyed a decade of decline! This uptick is reflected in nearly all categories! In Stark County Ohio not only have they seen an increase in traffic deaths, but its almost doubled!

Is it enforcement or the lack thereof? How do you explain the across the board increased enforcement efforts by the OHP? Let’s take a look:

As you can see statewide enforcement efforts have increased, yet fatality rates continue to increase. Pick a year and there's always been a direct correlation between the level of enforcement and lower death rates; not this year.

2012 456,925 2012 18,927 2012 22,456 2012 78,148
2011 407,484 2011 18,233 2011 20,156 2011 69,691
Increase 12% increase 3% increase 11% increase 12%
Source: Ohio Highway Patrol

According to a Stark County, OH online news source, "the OHP suspect distracted driving may play a larger role in the fatality rate because it has yet to be flushed out given existing state law. 'Texting' while driving is considered a primary offense for teen drivers but is only a secondary offense for adults, meaning officers can only issue a citation if a motorist has been pulled over for another traffic violation."

Texting While Driving

How silly is that?

After making the stop I'm sure there are those who would buckle under the arresting officer's searing question, "Were you texting before I pulled you over" and make a tearful confession! But you know as well as I do, the vast majority will not only deny texting, and being the good citizens they are, will claim they refrained from using the phone altogether!

This is laughable!

Let's get real folks. Primary or Secondary offense aside, texting while driving is life threatening behavior! There are some experts who feel strongly 'texting' will overtake 'speeding' as the chief factor for the carnage displayed daily on our roadways. These otherwise 'nice' people who don't believe they could possibly be a danger to anyone by answering a text, are negligent at best or a potential killer in the extreme. What will it take to affect these people? You've no doubt guessed it; enforcement!

If doing routine traffic enforcement, why not use equipment that backs up your visual assessment? Speed enforcement, following too close (tailgating), HOV lane violations, stop sign/red light running are subject to being recorded and documented. TruCam's high resolution video camera with 2,000 image storage will in addition capture distracted driving violations as well.

Quarterly reporting is made easy! TruCam records all deployment stats for each operator giving the department endless target flexibility and is easily uploaded onto a spreadsheet. This comes in handy when your TruCam is obtained through grant funding. TruCam is the ultimate solution in traffic enforcement.

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Read the news article, Traffic Deaths Rise In Stark County.

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