LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Now that summer is fast approaching it won't be long before teens are out of class and enjoying their summer break taking to the roads. Experts refer to the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day as the 100 deadliest days for teen drivers on the road. It's all due to the amount of teens, an estimated 37%, who text and drive. AT&T is now working to curb that habit by visiting high schools all across the country to promote the dangers of texting and driving.
On May 15, the AT&T "Txtng & Driving ... It Can Wait" campaign visited Seneca High School. The campaign is complete with a real car that simulates the dangers of texting and driving. Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer attended the event along with several police officers and representatives from AT&T.
Lt. Joe Seelye, commander of the traffic division at LMPD, introduced himself to the small crowd of students saying he hopes to never meet them on official business. Seelye commented on what he saw when watching students participate in the real-life simulator and his hopes they took the experience seriously.
"The red light you ran or the van you ran into on this machine could happen in real life," Seelye said. "It could be your grandparents, your parents, your siblings... anybody here that you run into."
Seelye stated that 18% of road fatalities can be linked to texting and driving. The National Safety Council reports that over 480,000 crashes this year alone will be linked to drivers using their cell phones.
"Using that cell phone in that fashion is the same as operating that vehicle under the influence," says Seelye.
Rob South with AT&T says the company has now developed an application for smart phones called 'AT&T Drive Mode.' This application is designed to make it easier for teens and adults alike to put down their phones while driving.
"When it's on, if someone sends you a text, it will automatically reply to that person telling them that you're driving and you'll respond later," said South.
The new application is part of a four-year, $1 million commitment toward initiatives that educate the public about the dangers of texting while driving.
Friday, May 17 2013 7:16 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:16:53 GMT
One person has died in a crash near Harrisonville, MO, Thursday evening. The crash happened on Missouri Highway 7 and Walker Road. It involved a car and a tractor-trailer. Harrisonville is in Cass County.More >
Savannah Nash celebrated her 16th birthday last week. She died Thursday when her car slammed into a semi while she was texting during her first time driving by herself.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 3:31 PM EDT2013-05-18 19:31:43 GMT
The National Weather Service says there is a slight risk for severe weather on Sunday, and isolated tornadoes and supercell storms are possible.The threat for severe weather will continue into Monday.StormsMore >
The National Weather Service says there is a moderate risk for severe weather on Sunday, and isolated tornadoes and supercell storms are possible.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 4:52 PM EDT2013-05-17 20:52:00 GMT
An 11-year-old girl is recovering after a distracted driver hit her and then fled.She is recovering at Children's Mercy Hospital with a broken arm, ruptured ear drum and fractured pelvis. Her family isMore >
An 11-year-old girl is recovering after a distracted driver hit her and then fled.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 6:47 PM EDT2013-05-17 22:47:09 GMT
Imagine suffering a medical emergency in a foreign country, half a world away. It happened to a man from Overland Park, KS, in Japan. Now, his family is trying to come up with a way to get him home whereMore >
An Overland Park family is trying to raise enough money to get their son back to the U.S. from Japan after he suffered a massive stroke in the other country.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 7:20 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:20:10 GMT
The Rachael Ray show flew to New York a puppy that survived a month inside a locked car at Kansas City's tow lot.Ray and guest co-host Regis Philbin fawned over Kia, who was accompanied by Tori Fugate,More >
Television hosts Rachael Ray and Regis Philbin fawned this week over a puppy rescued earlier this month after living nearly a month inside a locked vehicle at Kansas City's municipal impound lot.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 3:19 PM EDT2013-05-18 19:19:04 GMT
A Kansas City woman behind a new youth literacy program celebrated a milestone Friday night and none too soon. Jean Rundle is suffering from a heart condition and in quickly declining health. She neverMore >
A Kansas City woman behind a new youth literacy program celebrated a milestone Friday night and none too soon.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 7:11 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:11:46 GMT
Students from a suburban Kansas City school district will be nearly 600 pounds lighter when they return Friday from the spring semester at a weight-loss boarding school in South Carolina. That amountMore >
Students from the Independence School District were 600 pounds lighter when they returned Friday from the spring semester at a weight-loss boarding school in South Carolina.More >
Saturday, May 18 2013 12:47 AM EDT2013-05-18 04:47:49 GMT
For the first time, the University of Kansas awarded two Wounded Warrior Scholarships. The money, of $10,000/year for up to four years, goes to students who are injured veterans or caretakers of injuredMore >
A young marine from Kansas City, KS, was one of two recipients of the University of Kansas' new Wounded Warrior Scholarship.More >
Friday, May 17 2013 2:21 PM EDT2013-05-17 18:21:35 GMT
A woman is in custody after she allegedly struck her father in the head with a pistol, Overland Park police said Friday.The woman, who is in her middle 20s, was taken into custody about 11 a.m. This wasMore >
A woman is in custody after she allegedly struck her father in the head with a pistol, Overland Park police said Friday.More >