State Observes “No Texting While Driving Day"

Thursday, Sep 19, 2013  |  Updated 9:39 PM EDT
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Hartford students pledge to help make roads safer by refraining from texting and driving.

Hartford students pledge to help make roads safer by refraining from texting and driving.

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State officials have declared today “No Texting While Driving Day” and are reminding people about the dangers of distracted driving.

Each year, there are more than 100,000 crashes involving drivers who are texting, according to the National Safety Council.

Several of them lead to serious injuries or even death.

Statistics show that every year at least 70 people die in Connecticut due to distracted driving.

Students from two high schools in Hartford today are seeing a special screening of a new documentary called, “From One Second to the Next,” in which victims and drivers who caused crashes explain how sending one text while you drive can change your life. 

More than 75 cities and towns in Connecticut have also issued proclamations for this “No Texting While Driving Day.”

At this morning’s event, students took a pledge and promised not to text and drive.

"I'm fearful of what can happen," said Hartford student Monaisha Braswell. "I can injur myself, ruin my car and injur someone else." 

The hope is that, by instilling the message in kids, it will ultimately reach parents as well.

"We think back to the days of anti-smoking and driving, smoking, seatbelts and waht happened was those kids became advocates and harassed their parents to do the right thing," said John Emra, president of AT&T in Connecticut.

Legally, Connecticut drivers can text while stopped at a red light or stop sign, but the law will change next month to completely outlaw texting behind the wheel.

"We will do our best to inform the public, but it's very simple," said state police spokesman Lt. Paul Vance. "Be part of the solution, not part of the problem."

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