AAA Kansas pumping out message against texting and driving

AAA Kansas is trying to put its message before motorists to not text and drive in the peak travel months of summer.

“AAA launched our ‘Don’t drive intoxicated, Don’t drive intexticated’ distracted driving campaign here in Kansas back in April,” said spokesman Shawn Steward. “It compares texting and driving with drinking and driving and talks about how both of those are dangerous and potentially deadly behaviors.”

The message is going somewhere almost every motorist has to be from time to time.

“That’s at gas pumps at gas stations around the state,” said Steward. “We’ve put up signage on the pumps themselves and also the pump handles, sort of as a captive audience as you’re standing there filling up your tank. We’re hoping that motorists will see that.”

Like many risky behaviors behind the wheel, people don’t want other drivers being distracted, but admit that it happens to them sometimes.

“Nearly 97 percent of motorists believe that mobile phone use while driving is extremely or very dangerous behavior,” said Steward. “That’s about the same number that view driving while intoxicated to be extremely or very dangerous. People have the same perception of them, but interestingly, more than 40 percent of those same respondents in the survey admit that they had read texts or emails on their phone at least once in the last 30 days.”

Responding to a recent AAA survey, almost 70% of Kansas drivers say they notice more drivers distracted by electronic devices than just two years ago.