Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of work-related deaths in the U.S. According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, in 2017, 9,693 drivers were involved in distracted driving related collisions, including 33 fatal crashes.
In the past few years, several ASSP Arizona and Southern Arizona chapter initiatives have addressed safe driving, including the facilitation of the Drive Smart Arizona coalition, a partnership with ABC 15 Operation Safe Roads, recognizing Anita Helt’s work with on safe driving with the Advisory Board Executive of the Year; chapter discussions of “It takes a village to end distracted driving tragedies,” and the annual Arizona Distracted Driving Awareness Summit, cofounded by ASSP member Jeremy Bethancourt. Both chapters’ grassroots-driven efforts have led to change on the state level: on April 22, 2019, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill that enacted a statewide ban on handheld cell phone use while driving.
Previously, Arizona was only one of three U.S. states that did not ban texting while driving. The law goes into effect Jan. 1, 2021.