In keeping with its commitment to the safety of its customers, the Central Florida Expressway Authority (CFX) is supporting the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) Distracted Driving Awareness Campaign by asking Central Floridians to do their part to ensure safer roadways. The campaign is designed to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving in an attempt to change behavior and save lives.
In 2015, the DHSMV reported more than 45,700 distracted driving crashes in Florida resulting in more than 39,000 injuries and more than 200 fatalities. Orange County saw more than 5,500 distracted crashes last year, making it the number one county in the state for distracted driving accidents and number two in fatal distracted driving accidents.
Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving. But, because text messaging requires visual, manual and cognitive attention from the driver, it is by far the most alarming distraction. Texting takes a driver’s eyes off the road for four seconds, enough time to drive a football field blindfolded at 55 mph.
In February 2013, CFX launched a “Designated Texter” public service campaign about the dangers of distracted driving. CFX asked drivers to keep their thumbs on the wheel and use a “Designated Texter” when there’s a passenger in the car, and not to text when they are driving alone. Since then, CFX has received over 3,500 Designed Texter pledges.
CFX is a member of the FL DNT TXT+DRIVE Coalition which successfully championed for legislation to ban texting while driving in the State of Florida. In May 2013, Governor Rick Scott signed into law SB 52 which bans texting while driving. With that, Florida became the 41st state to impose some sort of ban on texting while driving.