Texting While Driving is a Distraction - Don't Do It!

OMG! Get the Message.

Texting while driving is a deadly distraction.

The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) has joined forces with the Orthopaedic Trauma Association (OTA) on a public service announcement urging drivers to NEVER text while driving. Simply put, texting is a deadly distraction that can cause accidents, severe orthopaedic traumas or even worse, death. Orthopaedic surgeons not only treat, but want to prevent accidental traumas from occurring in the first place. This ad is the first step in educating the public in what has become a commonplace practice among drivers. Spread the word, save a friend.

  • Listen to the 2010 radio spot (:30) in partnership with the Auto Alliance, AAOS and the OTA.

Download the OMG Communications Toolkit, an all-in-one resource for orthopaedic surgeons who want to help educate their patients, families, friends and neighbors on the dangers of distracted driving. Spread the word with AAOS and OTA - one conversation, one click, one patient at a time - and we together will stop this dangerous new trend in its tracks.

Remind drivers to NEVER text while driving with every email-add "OMG!Don't Drive Distracted- visit www.aaos.org/donttext" to your outgoing email signature. Microsoft Outlook users may do so by following these simple steps:

  1. Go to "Tools" => "Options"

  2. "Mail Format" => "Signatures" => "New"

  3. Enter a "New" signature name => Select "Start with a blank signature" => Click "Next".

  4. Enter the text you would like to include in the signature, format as necessary, click "Finish," and follow the remainder of the prompts to save the new signature.

Get the Facts!

The National Safety Council (NCS) estimates that nearly 28 percent of crashes - about 1.6 million a year - can be attributed to cell phone talking and texting while driving.

In addition, general statistics on distracted driving are startling:

  • 80 percent of all crashes and 65 percent of near crashes involve some type of distraction. (Source: Virginia Tech 100-car study for NHTSA)
  • Nearly 6,000 people died in 2008 in crashes involving a distracted or inattentive driver, and more than half a million were injured. (NHTSA)
  • The worst offenders are the youngest and least-experienced drivers: men and women under 20 years of age. (NHTSA)
  • Drivers who use hand-held devices are four times as likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves. (Source: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)

Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving:

  • The AAOS and OTA encourage all drivers to pull over to use a cell phone, but if you must answer the phone, use a hands-free device.
  • Do not dial phone numbers on a cell phone, send or read text messages while driving.
  • When in the car, set up a "driving" profile on your smartphone, which switches off text alerts and silences the phone. (This is a function on the Blackberry that can be easily selected from the home screen).
  • To listen to the radio, use the volume and station buttons on the steering wheel, instead of reaching for the center counsel.
  • Before you depart, load compact discs in the player or set up a pre-selected playlist on an mp 3 player.
  • Enter an address in the navigation system before you depart or while in park.

Other Resources and More Information: