COLORADO, USA — Distracted drivers cause an average of 43 crashes a day in Colorado, according to a report released Tuesday by the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT).
Many of those crashes lead to serious injury or death, and they account for 13 percent of all crashes on Colorado roads, CDOT said.
"When you fail to pay attention behind the wheel, you put yourself and other travelers at serious risk," said CDOT Director Shoshana Lew.
Fifty-three fatalities and 6,269 injuries were attributed to the 15,673 crashes involving distracted drivers in 2018, according to CDOT data.
And more than 90 percent of people in a recent survey reported they had seen distracted driving in the previous seven days.
"Driving is a significant responsibility and demands our full concentration," Lew said.
April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. CDOT launched its "Get Turned On" campaign urging drivers to turn on "Do not disturb while driving." That's an iPhone feature that blocks incoming text messages and other notifications when it's connected to a vehicle's Bluetooth or when the vehicle is in motion.
Android phones have similar functions, and third-party apps can be downloaded to do the same.
"It helps eliminate the temptation of quickly checking a text message or alert – a seemingly harmless habit but one that can have serious consequences," said Darrell Lingk, director of CDOT's Office of Transportation Safety.
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