The State of Distracted Driving



There’s no question about it: Distracted driving is a dangerous problem and has been a contributing factor in many crashes. Distracted driving is considered anything that takes your eyes off the road – texting, talking on a cellphone, eating, fiddling with the radio, etc., and the consequences of driving distracted can be devastating. In 2017, distracted driving claimed 3,166 lives, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Distracted Driving Facts:

  • On average, sending or reading a text message takes your eyes off the road for approximately 5 seconds — that’s enough time to drive the length of a football field at 55 mph. 
  • Drivers age 15 to 19 years have the largest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes.

Many states have distracted driving laws that prohibit talking on a cell phone, texting and other distractions while in the driver’s seat. In fact, 16 states prohibit all drivers from using hand-held cell phones while driving. Thirty-eight states ban all cell phone use by novice drivers and 20 states ban cell phone use for school bus drivers. Nearly all — 47 — states prohibit text messaging for all drivers. Take a look at the below map of our eight Farm Bureau Financial Services states to see what laws are in place to combat distracted driving.

Distractions are everywhere but avoiding the distractions while you’re driving helps keep you and everyone else safe on the road. Check out these simple strategies you can take to avoid distracted driving. You can even help us increase safe driving awareness by signing the Farm Bureau Financial Services Safe Driving Pledge. Vow to avoid distractions while driving, today!

Are you a safe driver? Take our interactive quiz and test your knowledge. Contact your Farm Bureau agent to learn about programs we offer to reward safe driving.