The July 4th holiday is this week, and the Kansas Highway Patrol has some important enforcement initiatives that motorists should be aware of.
Beginning July 1, and lasting through July 10, the Patrol will be conducting a texting enforcement initiative. Troopers will be out looking for drivers who are violating Kansas’ texting law, and will be citing those observed in violation. The Kansas law states on a wireless device, drivers may not manually type, send, or read a written communication, including, but not limited to, a text message, instant message, or electronic mail.
According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), texting while driving creates a crash risk 23 times greater than driving while not distracted. In 2012, an estimated 421,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver, this reflects a nine percent increase from the estimated 387,000 people injured in 2011. The Kansas Highway Patrol and local law enforcement enforce the texting law throughout the year, but this holiday period, the Patrol will place a special emphasis focused on locating those texting while driving.
With the July 4th holiday, many motorists will be traveling across the nation. The Patrol will be out actively looking for impaired drivers. With many celebrations across the state, drivers should make sure they are designating a sober driver. The Patrol would also like to remind motorists to wear their seatbelts and use the correctly fitted child safety seats, as they are the best defense should you be involved in a crash.
The Patrol wishes all of those traveling during the July 4th holiday weekend, and throughout the summer season, safe travels and to be well. If you are in need of assistance on a Kansas highway, you can call KHP for assistance at *47 (*HP) or *582 (*KTA) for the Kansas Turnpike.