Test Your Defensive Driving Skills - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/19/04

Test Your Defensive Driving Skills

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Whether it was cell phones, the radio or other distraction, distracted drivers caused more than a quarter of a million serious crashes nationwide in 2002.

Who is most likely to be a distracted driver? Men or women?

The answer is men. In fact, researchers say two out of every three distracted drivers are male. Drivers are most often distracted by something they see on the road or outside their vehicle. Safety experts say there is a two-in-five chance that you will be involved in an alcohol related crash.

This leads us to the following question.

What is the best defense against drunk drivers? Driving in the far left lane? Wearing a safety belt? Driving with your lights on?

The answer is wearing a safety belt. Trooper Robyn Wilson says, "If an intoxicated driver hits you, you're much less likely to get injured or killed if you're buckled up. You won't get thrown from your vehicle and the crumple zone of the vehicle itself may protect you."

Troopers remind us it's important to wear your safety belt at all times. But is it the law?

Who is legally required to use a seatbelt in the front seat of a car or truck? Is it the driver only? The passenger only? Or everyone?

The correct answer is the driver and all front seat passengers. Trooper Wilson says, "The driver can be issued a ticket if he or she is not wearing a safety belt or if there are any unsecured children in the car. Any adult front seat passengers who aren't buckled up can be ticketed as well."

Until what age must a child be secured in a seat belt? Until the age of 12, 15 or 17?

The answer is 17 however there are more stringent rules for younger children. Trooper Sparky Dean says, "Kids less than four years old or less than thirty-six inches tall have to be restrained in a child safety seat. It's the law in Texas." If you're caught breaking that law, you face fines up to $200. Fines that can be avoided, if you practice safety solutions.

To take our other driving quiz (click here).

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