Public & Government Affairs
AV Technology and Distracted Driving
Planning for the future, protecting the here and nowThe promise of increased safety on the roads that surrounds automated vehicle (AV) technology continues to evolve on a public stage, affecting how consumers feel about it. AAA’s annual automated vehicle survey recently found that 71 percent of drivers polled are afraid to ride in a fully self-driving car, indicating that overall feelings toward automated technology have not rebounded since the news of a number of high-profile incidents involving self-driving test vehicles in 2018.
Most experts agree that a fully self-driving fleet is still decades away. When that day arrives, it holds the promise of eliminating deadly driver-caused dangers such as impaired, aggressive and distracted driving. While the world waits for a future where autonomous vehicles save us from our own dangerous driving behaviors, AAA continues to embrace its role as motorists’ advocate to both plan for that automated future and combat today’s human-caused dangers on the road.
For example, in April, our club launched the multiyear safety campaign “Don’t drive intoxicated. Don’t drive intexticated.” This campaign is designed to create awareness of the distracted driving problem and to change driver behavior by making distracted driving as socially unacceptable as drinking and driving. Launch events took place at state capitols, high schools, colleges and transportation conferences across our club’s territory supported by a broad-based coalition of safety advocates, legislators, law-enforcement officials and other partners. This multichannel safety campaign aims to help audiences understand that the consequences of using and being distracted by a smartphone while driving are the same as drinking and driving.
To learn more about the campaign and add your name to the pledge to end distracted driving, please visit AAA.com/DontDriveDistracted.
If you have a distracted driving story to share, please email AAA at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will be focusing on this motoring safety issue in the months ahead.
This article originally appeared in the July/August 2019 edition of AAA World.