My teenager just started driving in South Dakota and texts all the time! What information can I give her to show how dangerous texting while driving can be in South Dakota?


You are right to be concerned.  Even though many young drivers think they can safely text while driving, statistics show they really cannot. According to the United States Department of Transportation, there are a few statistics that may help your teenager see how dangerous her behavior is:

  • In 2010, over 3000 people were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver.  An estimated 416,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver.
  • Eighteen percent of injury crashes in 2010 were considered to be distraction-affected crashes.
  • Eleven percent of all drivers under the age of 20 involved in fatal crashes were considered to be distracted at the time of the crash. This age group has the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of an accident.
  • Forty percent of American teenagers say they have been in a car when the driver used a cell phone in a way that put others in danger.
  • Sending or receiving a text takes a driver's eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds. If a car were traveling at 55 mph, the driver would drive the length of an entire football field, blind.
  • Driving while using a cell phone reduces the amount of brain activity associated with driving by 37%.