Buckle Up Cell Down

How many times in the last week did you use your cell phone, eat a snack, change the radio station, or do any other task while you were driving? For most of us, driving isn’t our only focus when we’re behind the wheel. Unfortunately, these distractions are leading to fatalities that could otherwise be avoided.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2013, 3,154 people were killed and an estimated 424,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver. That’s why NHTSA and the Arkansas Highway Safety Office is focusing on ways to change the behavior of drivers through legislation, enrollment, enforcement, public awareness and education—the same activities that have curbed drunk driving and increased seat belt use.

NHTSA’s campaign is centered on the slogans, “One Text or Call Could Wreck it All and Buck Up Cell Down.” Its goal is to help drivers understand that texting, cell phone use, and other distractions behind the wheel can have dangerous consequences.

Together, we can make a difference in Arkansas by bringing together community and health groups, safety advocates, legislators and other elected officials, law enforcement, businesses, concerned citizens and our largest safety partner group, the driving public to address this issue.

I would like to ask you to join us in this lifesaving effort as we ask Arkansas drivers to put down their phones and concentrate on the road as well as Buckle Up. Click here to find out more about the S.A.F.E. Driver Pledge agreeing to make S.A.F.E. driving choices and influence others to do the same.

What's the Best Defense Against Impaired Driver?

A seat belt is your best defense against an impaired or distracted driver. Buckle-up. Every trip. Every time.

Do you know…

  • Three out of four fatal crashes occur within 25 miles of the victim’s home.
  • Most crashes causing death or injury occur at speeds below 40 miles per hour!
  • Nearly 18% of Arkansas drivers do not wear their seat belts.

Using a handheld device while driving is a leading cause of distraction-related crashes. Put the cell phone down and just drive.

Do you know…

  • Each day, 9 people are killed and over 1,000 are injured in crashes involving distracted driving.

Why Distracted Driving is a Problem

  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration identified distracted driving as “a crisis that needs to be addressed now.”
  • 80% of all crashes and 65% of all near crashes involve driver inattention within 3 seconds of the crash. (Virginia Tech)
  • Texting (in essence manipulating a phone) while driving increases your crash risk by 2300%, because it involves all THREE kinds of distraction – manual, visual and cognitive. It is by far the most egregious form of distracted driving.
  • In a Liberty Mutual survey, 80% of teens reported that they viewed APP use while driving as “not distracting.” (Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety)
  • Motorists with smart phones use hand-held devices in 88 out of every 100 trips. Therefore, Zendrive estimates that there are about 600 million trips involving distracted driving in the US every day. (Zendrive)

Buckle Up Cell Down FAQs

Q: What Is the Penalty for Distracted Driving in Arkansas?

Penalties for violating Arkansas distracted driving laws include:

  • For texting, emailing, or using the Internet while driving: $50-$250 for first offense, $500 for any further offenses
  • For use of a handheld cell phone in an active school zone: $250 for first offense, $500 for any further offenses
  • For use of a handheld cell phone by drivers aged 18-20: $50
  • For use of any kind of cell phone by drivers under 18: $50

Fines are doubled for violations that involve collisions.

Q: When was it illegal to use a phone while driving?

A: On Wednesday, July 24, 2019 Act 738 made it illegal to instant message or use cell phone data while driving in Arkansas. ... Drivers under the age of 18 won't be allowed to use phones or hands-free devices. Drivers between 18 and 20-years-old will be allowed to use hands-free devices, but not cell phones.Jul 22, 2019

Source: https://www.trustedchoice.com/distracted-driving/arkansas-laws/

Q: How will drivers learn about the law?

A: This web page is part of the answer. AHSO develops and provides educational materials to the public regarding the provisions of this act. Messaging through social and digital media, publications, news stories and columns, and public service announcements continue to carry educational messaging.

Q: Can I hold my cellphone in my hand while driving?

A: It is illegal for a driver to operate a motor vehicle while holding a cellphone or mobile device.

Q: Can I talk on my cellphone while driving?

A: Yes. But you may not hold the phone.

On Wednesday, July 24, 2019 Act 738 made it illegal to instant message or use cell phone data while driving in Arkansas. ... Drivers under the age of 18 won't be allowed to use phones or hands-free devices. Drivers between 18 and 20-years-old will be allowed to use hands-free devices, but not cell phones.Jul 22, 2019

Texting while Driving is Banned in Arkansas

Texting and driving is a primary offense law, which means that law enforcement can pull over a texting driver for no other reason than that they were texting, and carries a $50-$250 fine, according to the Arkansas State Police.

*Full Law Act 738 Amended: https://www.arkleg.state.ar.us/Acts/Document?type=pdf&act=738&ddBienniumSession=2019%2F2019R

Make the Life Saving Choice Buckle Up Cell Down, Arkansas!

Arkansas State Police Highway Safety Office