Data analysis of crashes involving distracted drivers in Texas
Driving is an activity that requires an individual's full attention. Unfortunately, drivers are often distracted while operating a vehicle if they partake in other activities such as texting, talking on their phone, drinking, eating, applying make-up, and countless of other things that impedes their concentration on the task of driving. Distracted driving that results in a crash lead to a significant amount of deaths and injuries. The purpose of this research is to study such crashes. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) made the Crash Records Information Systems (CRIS) available for review for permitted users only. This research utilized the CRIS database to study crashes in the state of Texas from 2009 through 2014. To examine the primary factors involved in both fatal and nonfatal crashes due to distracted driving, a comparison analysis of several parameters was performed. These parameters include gender, age group, population group, metropolitan area, and more. A significant finding of this study is that crashes that involve distracted drivers happen at a higher rate for younger drivers, specifically drivers under the age of twenty-five. This rate decreases as the drivers age increased. Additionally, the analysis shows that male drivers are involved in more distraction-related crashes than female drivers. A possible solution for the issue of distracted driving among young drivers is to adopt stricter graduate driver's license (GDL) provisions.