(WXYZ) — Distracted driving crashes in Michigan increased by 57 percent, and the number of fatalities from those crashes increased by 67 percent from 2016 to 2017, according to Michigan State Police.
Law enforcement agencies around the state will participate in a nationwide distracted driving mobilization period from April 11 to 15 in the middle of Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
“When you are behind the wheel, keep your phone out of reach,” said Michael L. Prince, OHSP director. “Studies show that texting while driving takes your attention off the road more than any other activity.”
There were 20,115 crashes in Michigan during 2017 involving distracted driving, resulting in 72 fatalities. In 201, there were 12,788 distracted driving crashes resulting in 43 fatalities.
“This is a noteworthy increase in crashes and nearly 30 more fatalities. We have to do everything possible to get those numbers trending in the opposite direction,” said Prince.
On April 11, agencies across the state will be patrolling and looking for distracted drivers.
Michigan law prohibits a driver from reading, manually typing or sending a text message while driving.