MDPS: Minnesotans making progress reducing driving distractions; improvement needed

(ABC 6 News) – It’s back-to-school time across Minnesota, and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (MDPS) want everyone to make sure students have a safe ride to and from school.

Driving children to school and to various after-school activities can be hectic.

It can be easy to get lost in thought, check a cell phone, or turn around to attend to a child in the backseat, however The Office of Public Safety says that any “distracted driving is dangerous driving.”

When it comes to distraction-related traffic fatalities (including distracted non-motorists) and suspected serious injuries, Minnesotans are making progress reducing distractions, but improvement is needed according to the MDPS.

  • In 2010, there were:
    • 76 distraction-related traffic fatalities
    • 236 suspected serious injuries
  • In 2021, preliminary numbers show there were:
    • 27 distraction-related traffic fatalities
    • 154 suspected serious injuries

Hands free stats

Also, children rely on adults for proper car seat use to keep them safe.

Of the 14,692 children ages 7 and under who were properly restrained in crashes in Minnesota from 2017-2021, 88% were not injured, while another 9% sustained only minor injuries, according to MDPS data.

In Minnesota, all children must be in a child safety seat until they are 4’9″ tall, or age 8, whichever comes first. For child passenger safety information, CLICK HERE.

To help keep yourself and your kids safe this school year, CLICK HERE.