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Weekly Toolbox Talk: Driving and Texting

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which enforces worker safety laws, has joined with the Transportation Department, other Labor Department agencies and key associations and organizations to enlist the help and cooperation of businesses – large and small – in a nationwide outreach, education, and enforcement effort to stop the dangerous practice of texting while driving

Texas was one of last four states without a general texting ban behind the wheel. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, 455 people were killed and more than 3,000 seriously injured in the state last year in vehicle crashes related to distracted driving. The new law goes into effect on September 1st and prohibits drivers from reading, writing or sending an electronic message on a device unless the vehicle is stopped.

Texting is a distraction and is not allowed on the jobsite, and according to the new Texas law HB 62, you cannot do it while driving.

Distracted driving crashes killed more than 3,000 people and injured 416,000 in 2010. Reaction time is delayed for a driver talking on a cell phone as much as it is for a driver who is legally drunk. People under the age of 20 are involved in more fatal crashes due to distractions than any other age group.

Distracted driving is considered driving while anything takes your attention away from the task of driving, inside or outside of the vehicle. Distractions increase anyone’s risk of being in a crash, but are especially risky for new, inexperienced teen drivers. Distractions include, but are not limited to, using a cell phone for talking, texting or apps, eating, adjusting the radio, reading and grooming. If your job at Marek requires you to operate a vehicle, you should not be using your cell phone to text and drive.

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