Child Safety On The Information Highway
Keeping children safe extends beyond car seats. By providing educational information to parents and caregivers, and through our different prevention campaigns, NHTSA works to prevent the injury and death of children in and around vehicles.
Another big change over the past 20 years is that children are no longer just accessing the Net via computers. They are also going online with phones, tablets, Wi-Fi-equipped media players like the iPod Touch, connected TVs and game consoles. And the list keeps growing. Thanks to Google Glass, we can now access the web as we walk around and navigate through voice and eye movements. It’s hard to imagine the technology that might be mentioned in the 40th anniversary edition of this guide.
As of September 1, 2001, automobile manufacturers are required to equip all new vehicle trunks with a 'glow in the dark' trunk release inside the trunk compartment. Show your kids how to use the release in case of an emergency. If your car is older and does not have the 'glow in the dark' trunk release, ask your automobile dealership about getting your vehicle retrofitted with a trunk release mechanism.
The Office of Highway Safety offers law enforcement agencies throughout the state the opportunity to participate in Traffic Enforcement Mobilizations (saturation patrols), which support enforcement efforts by agencies to reduce deaths, serious injuries and economic loss as part of the Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP). Dedicated enhanced enforcement efforts and /or traffic enforcement equipment for regular duty dedicated mobilization enforcement are funded for hours worked during the mobilizations. Participation in the mobilization is initiated by a Traffic Enforcement Mobilization Agreement (TEMA) between the agency and the Idaho Transportation Department Office of Highway Safety.
A Vehicle Crash Report (VCR) is filled out for every crash that involves a motor vehicle, occurs on public property and results in more than $1500 ($750 before January 1, 2006) property damage for any one person involved in the crash, or results in and injury to any person involved. All law enforcement agencies in Idaho (City Police, County Sheriffs, and the Idaho State Police) are required by Idaho Code 49-1306 to send VCR forms to the Office of Highway Safety (OHS). All law enforcement agencies are now completing the VCRs on the software program called Idaho’s Mobile Program for Accident CollecTion (eIMPACT).
Research conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) in 2006 reported that, “Nearly 80% of crashes and 65% of near-crashes involved some form of driver inattention within three seconds before the event. The primary cause of driver inattention in this major study included such distracting activities as cell phone use and factors that significantly increase risk such as reaching for a moving object (a 9 times greater risk) and drowsiness (4 times greater).” Distracted driving caused by the use of a cell phone or any other electronic device to make a phone call, text a message, read email messages, manipulate music files or search for direction information is an ever growing concern.
The Office of Highway Safety produces educational materials which are available at no cost to qualified organizations for distribution to the general public. Typically, the materials are made available to law enforcement agencies, government and non-profit organizations.