New campaign aims to curb distracted driving in Metro Detroit

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

DETROIT – Distracted driving is no doubt a huge problem; in fact, it’s a bigger problem than drunken driving. 

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month and the whole point of bringing attention to this growing problem is to remind drivers that just answering one simple text could change your life or somebody else’s life forever. 

Distracted driving is something we see far too often.  

"People cutting you off; they’re on cell phones running through lights. It’s terrible," said Darin Smith. 

Smith who has an 18-year-old daughter on the road every day is trying to teach her the dangers of texting and driving. 

"I make her put them in her pocket; no cell phones at all," Smith said. 

Each day at least nine Americans die of distracted driving and 100 others are injured. And while hearing that may just be a statistic to you it’s not to Blake Kiefer, chairman of the Kiefer Foundation.

"It really doesn’t seem like a big deal until you experience something like this," Kiefer said. 

Two years ago, Kiefer lost his brother Mitchel, who was hit by a distracted driver. Since then it has been his family’s mission to end distracted driving and make Michigan a hands-free state.   

"Law enforcement is allowed to pull people over for using their phones," Kiefer said.  

For Kiefer, remembering to not text and drive is easy but for others that is not the case. 

"Once they realize the fines that people will be reciting for this offense people will think twice before they grab their phone," Kiefer said. 

So this month and every month, remember to remind your friends and family that it can wait. 

"Can you put your phone down or pay attention because I have been in the car and they’re literally not looking," said Raven Snyder. 

It is a simple request that could save your life. 

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