Youth commission notes distracted driving as part of statewide survey

Published on October 31, 2017

The Placer County Youth Commission participated in a statewide, student-led survey of distracted driving, organized and funded by the California Friday Night Live Partnership.

The annual Roadwatch survey aims to improve traffic safety and curtail distracted driving and the threat it poses to other drivers, pedestrians and cyclists. Drivers can be distracted by phones, passengers, pets, food and more.

This year, Friday Night Live members surveyed 88 intersections near middle and high schools across California and observed 10,252 cases of distracted driving in just one hour’s time, or 171 distracted drivers every minute. In Roseville, youth commissioners were stationed near Oakmont High School Oct. 10 and witnessed 72 instances of distracted driving in more than 1,500 vehicles over the course of an hour, averaging 1.2 distracted drivers every minute.

Statewide, the top distractions while driving observed by Friday Night Live youth were:
- Use of hand-held device: 3,224 total, 37 per intersection average
- Eating or drinking: 2,313 total, 27 per intersection average
- Personal grooming: 1,253 total, 14 per intersection average
- Reaching for an item: 1,138 total, 13 per intersection average

Friday Night Live amplifies youth voice and empowers teens to create change in their communities. Traffic crashes remain the number one killer of young people ages 15-24 in America. In California, a first citation for texting and driving is $162. Not only will it cost you monetarily, but according to the California Highway Patrol, a driver is 23 times more likely to be involved in a collision if they text while driving.

“Engaging California’s young people in this way encourages their positive and healthy development and empowers them to become active leaders,” says Jim Kooler of Friday Night Live.

For more information about the program, contact Kory Annonio visit the Placer Youth website or the Friday Night Live website.