COLUMBUS – The Ohio State Highway Patrol and other members of the 6-State Trooper Project are collaborating to focus on education and enforcement of distracted driving law.
This initiative will begin on Monday, October 5 at 12:01 a.m. and end on Monday, October 12 at 11:59 p.m. The high-visibility enforcement will include the Indiana State Police, Kentucky State Police, Michigan State Police, Pennsylvania State Police, West Virginia State Police and the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
Since 2015, there have been 75,411 crashes in Ohio which involved on or more drivers who were distracted by something within their vehicle. Of those, 227 were fatal crashes which resulted in 248 deaths.
“You are putting your life and the lives of others in danger any time you take your eyes off the road.” said Colonel Richard S. Fambro, Patrol superintendent. “Distracted driving can have devastating consequences for families.”
Distracted driving is any non-driving activity with the potential to distract a person from the primary task of driving and increase the risk of crashing. Distractions can be visual, taking eyes off of the road; manual, taking hands off the wheel; or cognitive, taking the mind off driving. Texting while driving is an example that combines all three types of distraction. Sending or receiving a text message takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field when traveling at 55 mph.
As a reminder, Ohio law bans all electronic wireless communication device usage for drivers under 18. Texting while driving is illegal for all drivers and is a secondary offense for adults 18 and above.
The 6-State Trooper Project is a multi-state law enforcement partnership aimed at providing combined and coordinated law enforcement and security services in the areas of highway safety, criminal patrol and intelligence sharing.