Eastern Nevada Law Enforcement will be Joining Forces and focusing on distracted drivers from July 22 through August 4, 2019. The Nevada Highway Patrol will be working with the Elko County Sheriff’s Office, Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office, Lander County Sheriff’s Office, West Wendover Police Department, White Pine County Sheriff’s Office and the Winnemucca Police Department  to urge motorists to keep their eyes on the road and put away cell phones or any other items that may cause a distraction. Distracted driving is any activity that diverts attention from driving. This isn’t exclusive to cell phones. Talking or texting on your phone is the most egregious, however, eating and drinking, grooming, adjusting the stereo, entertainment or navigation system, even talking to people in your vehicle may cause you to be distracted. Anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving is a distraction.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) would like to remind Nevada drivers:

Texting is the most alarming distraction. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for approximately 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed. Now imagine sending or receiving a text at freeway speeds of 75 to 80 mph. 

You cannot drive safely unless the task of driving has your full attention. Any non-driving activity you engage in is a potential distraction and increases your risk of crashing.

Distracted driving is dangerous, claiming 3,166 lives in 2017 alone. 

Between 2012-2017, nearly 20,000 people died in crashes involving a distracted driver.

Nevada’s “cell phone law” (NRS 484B.165), went into effect on January 1st, 2012. The law states you SHALL NOT use a cellular telephone or other handheld wireless communications device while operating a motor vehicle. Exceptions include emergency first responders acting within the scope of their duty. Exceptions also include a “Good Samaritan” clause for motorist who are calling 911 to report a medical emergency, a safety hazard or criminal activity.

“The Nevada Highway Patrol is reminding drivers that taking your eyes off the road for even one second can change your life or someone else’s life forever. While Nevada law enforcement conducts traffic stops on a daily basis for a multitude of violations, the emphasis for these two weeks in July and August is distracted driving. Put down the distractions and Drive Safely, Nevada.”

The Nevada Highway Patrol urges you to be a safe, distraction-free driver. More information about safe driving and the state’s Zero Fatalities goal is available online at www.ZeroFatalitiesNV.com.