Distracted Driving

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Just How Bad Is It In South Carolina?

  • Distracted driving kills more than eight people and injures another 1,095 people daily in the U.S. (NHTSA)
  • South Carolina ties for 7th worst drivers in the U.S. according to a study of key metrics. (SmartAsset.com)
  • South Carolina is #1 in the nation for Fatality Rate per 100 Million Vehicle Miles Traveled in 2019. (IIHS)
  • South Carolina averages two crashes every hour involving a distracted driver. (SCDPS)
  • A teen driver is involved in a collision that kills or injures someone every 1.4 hours in South Carolina. (SCDPS)
  • 1,006 people were killed in traffic accidents on South Carolina roads in 2019. (SCDPS)
  • In 2019, South Carolina reported 18,936 total collisions where distracted driving contributed to the accident. (SCDPS)
  • Texting and driving is 6X more dangerous than driving drunk. (NHTSA)
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If you're distracted, who's driving?

  • You are 90% more likely to have an accident when driving distracted. (NHTSA)
  • You will travel the length of a football field in the time it takes you to read one text message when going 55 mph. (NHTSA)
  • Research tells us that phone use, while driving, is known to shift a driver’s attention more than any other form of distraction in the car.
  • In 2019, distracted driving killed at least 3,142 people nationally. (NHTSA)

Ways to Drive Distraction-Free

  • Silence cell phones and put them out of reach before starting to drive.
  • Set GPS, radio, and climate control before you take your car out of park.
  • If you need to take your eyes off the wheel, wait until you’re completely stopped and in a safe location.
  • Ask yourself this: If you’re distracted, who’s driving?
1 out of every 2 teens will be in a car accident before they finish high school.

Talk to Your Teen About Driving Smart

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), teen drivers are more likely than any other age group to be involved in a fatal car crash caused by distracted driving. In 2019, one out of every two people killed in crashes involving distracted teen drivers were teens. In South Carolina, a teen driver is involved in a collision that kills or injures someone every 1.4 hours (SCDPS).

The National Safety Council estimates that 94% of teens are well informed about the dangers of texting and driving, but 34% of teens surveyed in a NHTSA study admitted to using their phones behind the wheel and 48% of kids between 12 to 17 said they have been in the car while the driver was texting.

While you can’t be with your child every minute, you can have an influence on what kind of driver your teen becomes. Read more in the SCDOI’s brochure that helps you talk to your teen about distracted driving.

Drive Smart Video Gallery

Click here for more resources on distracted driving.

The SCDOI’S auto insurance shopper’s guide can be accessed here