National Road Safety Foundation: Drive2Life

This series of engaging lesson plans, aligned with the Common Core State Standards, provides your students with experience in conducting and analyzing research about distracted driving, developing and analyzing messages and communication about distracted driving, practicing skills for modeling and encouraging safe driving behavior, as well as offering the opportunity to put their knowledge into practice by creating a plan for a public service announcement (PSA) about preventing distracted driving. Guide your students through the experience of building awareness and knowledge about this topic. 

Key Facts and Statistics

  • In 2010, 3,092 people were killed in crashes involving driver distraction, and an estimated 416,000 were injured. (NHTSA)
  • 13% of fatalities caused by distracted-driving crashes in 2010 involved at least one driver using a cell phone. (NHTSA)
  • 18% of injury crashes in 2010 involved reports of distracted driving. (NHTSA)
  • In June 2012, more than 184 billion text messages were sent or received in the United States. (CTIA)
  • Teen drivers are more likely than other age groups to be involved in fatal crashes where distraction is reported. In 2010, 11% of drivers under 20 involved in fatal crashes were reported to have been distracted; 19% were distracted by the use of cell phones. (NHTSA)
  • 40% of all American teens say they have been in a car when the driver used a cell phone in a way that put people in danger. (Pew)
  • Drivers who use handheld devices are four times more likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves. (Pew)
  • Text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times greater than driving while not distracted. (VTTI)
  • Sending or receiving a text takes a driver's eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent—at 55 mph—of driving the length of an entire football field, blind. (VTTI)
  • Headset cell phone use is not substantially safer than handheld use. (VTTI)
  • Using a cell phone while driving—whether it's handheld or hands-free—delays a driver's reactions as much as having a blood alcohol concentration at the legal limit. (University of Utah)
  • Driving while using a cell phone reduces the amount of brain activity associated with driving by 37%. (Carnegie Mellon

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Lesson Plans

How Does Distraction Affect You?
As students gain an understanding that will help them develop an effective PSA about distracted driving, this lesson will help them understand the foundations of distracted driving and why a PSA on preventing distracted driving is so important.

Distracted Driving in Your School
Students will complete a short research poll and use results to gain an understanding of needs in terms of behavior change and awareness in their community. Students will use this information to shape their public service announcement.

Generation tXt
Students will delve into an analysis of a distracted-driving film, and will follow up with discussions and written responses.

Be a Driving Influence
Students will be empowered to be safe-driving role models and will learn tips to help them use social influence to encourage their friends and families to avoid distracted driving.

Plan Your PSA
In this lesson, students will create their own PSA storyboards. Students will use the experiences from this unit as a springboard for planning their Drive2Life PSAs.

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