According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Memorial Day to Labor Day are the “100 deadliest days” for teen drivers.
AT&T Spokesman Ryan Stafford said, “It’s when all the kids are out of school and on the road a lot more so we are bringing awareness to this deadly situation.”
Forty-three percent of teenagers admit to texting and driving.
Authorities said it’s among the most dangerous behind-the-wheel distractions.
According to Oklahoma County Sheriff John Whetsel, “The last two stops I made that I thought were drunk drivers turned out to be texting and driving. One was worse than any drunk driving stop than anything I’d ever seen.”
In an effort to make the streets safer this summer, AT&T has embarked on a 30-city tour with a computerized driving simulator.
Teens like Jamiece Nelson can see what it’s really like to simultaneously text and drive at 45 miles per hour.
Nelson said, “It was horrible. I killed somebody. That’s bad. I’m glad I don’t text and drive.”
Stafford said, “They may kill someone but at least it’s not real people. It is really a good illustration of what can be expected or what can come up whenever you do text and drive.”
In many cases, the bad behavior is learned from adult role models; 77 percent of teens surveyed said their parents reply to texts and emails while behind the wheel.