Forget about a $330 fine or the loss of four demerit points.
Sending a text message while driving can kill you and yet so many motorists are still taking that risk. Recent NSW data found that almost 39,000 people were charged last year for using their mobile phone while driving.
The damning data has seen the NSW Government join forces with high rating broadcaster Ray Hadley in the latest campaign against mobile phone use. This campaign asks the question – Your Last Text – Is it worth dying for?
Roads, Maritime and Freight Minister Melinda Pavey said Mr Hadley was an obvious choice to help lead this campaign, given he highlights the dangers of illegal mobile phone use while driving on his program.
“People aged between 25 and 34 are the worst mobile phone offenders, with 13,790 people in that age group charged last year with breaching the state’s mobile phone laws,” Mrs Pavey said.
“People aged 65 and over had the lowest offending rates, while those aged 18-20 had the second lowest offending with just 1,097 people charged last year.”
Mrs Pavey said the campaign aimed to highlight, that inconsequential text messages that could have waited, were not worth dying for.
“We need to get the message out that using a mobile phone while driving is profoundly dangerous,” she said.
“Taking your eyes off the road to look at your mobile phone for just two seconds, you are travelling 33 metres blind, while texting while driving increases the risk of a crash by 23 times.”
This latest initiative is a continuation of the highly successful Get Your Hand Off It campaign launched in 2013. The NSW Government has also partnered with the Sydney Swans in a mobile phone distraction campaign – Out of Sight Out of Mind.
Take this as a opportunity to remind your own fleet drivers that is never okay to respond to a text while driving. Even answering a phone call via bluetooth increases your chance of having a crash even though it may be legal. Allow your drivers the chance to truly disconnect themselves from the office and focus on the task at hand – arriving safely at their destination.