4th of July Deadliest Day on U.S. Roads
As we hit the road to celebrate the birth of our nation, who would think this is the most dangerous day of the year to be on the road? But according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety the 4th of July is just that.
As we warn our teens to be careful with fireworks and around water add to the list driving. Teens make up nearly 10 percent of the 4th of July fatalities. We all know about the dangers of drinking an driving, but another contributing factor to teen crashes is texting while driving. Research funded by the Allstate Foundation shows that 49 percent of teens report that texting is their biggest distraction behind the wheel.
Of course, it’s not just teens. In 2010, more than 3,000 people died in crashes that involved distracted driving with another 416,000 injured. Distractions range from eating to talking on a cell phone to passengers in the vehicle. It’s amazing how much a small distraction increases your risk for a crash. Here are some examples: Reaching for a cell phone increases your risk for a crash by nine times. Texting increases your risk by 23 times. Taking your eyes off the road for five seconds at 55 mph is like driving the length of a football field blindfolded. One text behind the wheel equates to four beers (.08 blood alcohol level).
Please do your part to keep our roads safe this 4th of July. Don’t text and drive and don’t drink and drive.
Have a happy and safe Independence Day from the Sioux Empire Safety Village.
Argus - USA Today story features Safety Village type driving simulators
An article this weekend in the Argus Leader from the USA Today hailed the virtues of Interactive driving simulators from Virtual Driver. These are the same simulators used by the Sioux Empire Safety Village located at the W.H. Lyon Fairgrounds in Sioux Falls.
As pointed out in the article one of the great features of the simulators is that drivers learn consequences of driving while drinking or texting. The drivers not only experience what it’s like to drive impaired and while texting using their own phone, but once things go awry the police show up on the video, they take you to jail or maybe the hospital, and you go to court. You find out how much it’s going to cost you financially and how long a drunk driving charge stays on your record.
While these machines weren’t really meant to be mobile, the Sioux Empire Safety Village has figured out how to make them so. We’ve been taking our three simulators to schools in Eastern South Dakota for a little more than a year. More than 2,600 students have experienced Simulated Reality. We work with the schools and local law enforcement to make this happen. A simulator will be available to fair goers during the Sioux Empire Fair Aug. 4-12, if you want to try your hand at it.
For a look at the USA Today article, we have it posted on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/siouxempiresafetyvillage
Boxelder Job Corps Students learn consequences of driving drunk and texting.
Students at Boxelder Job Corps got a taste of what it’s like to drive drunk and text and drive, but they weren’t really on the road or drinking and driving. Instead they were learning the consequences of risky driving by participating in Simulated Reality, the virtual reality driving simulator program operated by the Sioux Empire Safety Village. Dave Renli, Executive Director of the Safety Village, took one of the Safety Village’s three simulators to the Job Corps for a week. This is the first time the simulators have been in the western part of South Dakota. To understand how the simulators work, you almost have to try them out yourself. The next best thing is to watch it being done. That’s why I’m including a link to a story done by KEVN out of Rapid. http://www.blackhillsfox.com/2012/06/13/New-simulator-mimics-distracted-driving The simulators have been in use for a little more than a year now and have been a big hit. Mainly we take them to schools. More than 3,000 people have “Experienced the Reality without the Reality” while driving the simulators. If you are interested in scheduling the simulators, please contact us at (605) 334-7233.