Whether you’re travelling across town or the state to join family for Thanksgiving, the temptation to pick up your phone while driving exists. But it’s not just dangerous for you, your passengers and fellow drivers are also at risk.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, nearly one in five crashes on Texas roads were caused by a distracted driver in which 431 people died and 2,934 were seriously injured last year.
Many of these crashes could have been prevented if drivers had focused on their drive instead of scrolling. You may want to check out your favorite influencer’s turkey on Instagram, but the only turkey will be you if your distracted driving leads to a crash.
To combat the dangers of distracted driving, NTTA is part of the Red Thumb safety campaign, which encourages drivers to make some part of their thumb red as a visual reminder to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road at all times. Free Red Thumb bands are available at any NTTA Customer Service Center.
As you get ready to enjoy a Thanksgiving feast with family and friends this month, remember to put down the phone and just drive. Grandma wants to get a selfie with you for her new Instagram account.
Based on situations commonly encountered when responding to customers in need, our Roadside Safety Services (RSS) crews shared how to stay safe this winter. As a reminder, if you need help on NTTA’s roads
Check your spare tire–– dial #999 for free service, 24/7. When RSS crews arrive to fix driver’s flat tire, they often discover the spare tire is out of air. Make sure your spare tire is inflated.
Switch headlight to “auto” see drivers who donAs sunlight hours decrease in winter, our RSS crews often ’t use their headlights when they should. Now is a good time to recheck your settings.
Refill windshield washer fluid. If you haven’t checked in a while, you’re likely low on windshield washer fluid. Since it contains alcohol, it can also help prevent freezing precipitation from sticking to your windshield. Being unable to clear your windshield in icy conditions creates dangerous driving conditions.
Keep a blanket, several bottles of water and a flashlight in your vehicle even for a shorIf disabled, t time, you’d be surprised by how quickly it gets cold. It’s a good idea to have these simple things tucked away for unforeseen emergency situations.
When getting automotive maintenance, have these items checked:
- Battery strength: Cold temperatures can dramatically drain battery reserves
- Tires: Properly inflated and have a safe amount of tread remaining
- Car seats: Even if an expert installed your car seat, have it rechecked to make sure it remains secure
- Vehicle recalls: These are increasingly common, If it is, get the update needed. RSS team members check to see if yours is affected.
Now that your vehicle is ready for winter driving, make sure you are too. Remember that and can be reached 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling #999 from any location on NTTA's toll roads. Store the number in your cell phone now, before you need it. And commit to being a safe driver who does not text while behind the wheel. Become part of NTTA’s Red Thumb movement .