The Chief's Corner - Summer Driving Safety Tips

BOXBOROUGH – Police Chief Warren Ryder and the Boxborough Police Department would like to advise drivers to please act responsibly while behind the wheel this summer.

"Now that we're approaching the summer months and more people are on the road traveling to enjoy the weather, we would like to remind the community to always operate their vehicles safely," Chief Ryder said. "We've seen an increase in alcohol-related crashes in last week among our younger drivers and we hope to stop this trend to prevent fatalities in the community this season."

“Drinking and driving combined with texting while driving is a recipe for disaster," said Sergeant Brett Pelley, who is part of the Central Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council Accident Reconstruction Team. "We were very fortunate that neither of these operators struck another vehicle and were not severely injured or killed.” 

• Don't text and drive. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports a quarter of teens respond to a text message once or more every time they drive. Additionally, NHTSA reports that the average text takes your eyes are off the road for just five seconds. While traveling at 55 miles per hour, it's enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded. 

 

• If you can, while behind the wheel, keep your phone off. This will help ensure drivers' focus remains solely on the road. NHTSA reports that engaging in tasks like reaching for your phone, dialing and texting increases the risk of getting into a crash threefold. 

• Never get behind the wheel if you've been drinking and don't get in a vehicle with an impaired driver. According to the Center for Disease Control, in 2013, 10,076 people were killed in alcohol-impaired driving crashes, accounting for nearly one-third (31 percent) of all traffic-related deaths in the United States.

 

• Obey the speed limit. Speeding is a major contributor to motor vehicle accidents and fatal car crashes. Don't feel pressured to speed to keep up with traffic or friends on the road. Also, speeding tickets are often pricey and will result in an increase on your insurance premium.

 

• Be a defensive driver. Remain cognizant of the traffic ahead, behind, and next to you at all times. Stay at least one car length behind the car in front of you, especially in areas where the speed limit is slower. Turn your headlights on to increase visibility. A new Massachusetts law now requires drivers to turn their headlights on when windshield wipers are in motion.

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