Report Lists Arizona Among Worst In Nation For Driver Safety
The Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety (AHAS) report lists Arizona among the 10 worst states based on seven key laws it requires for optimal driving.
Chief among those is a front and rear seat belt law, and specifically a no-texting while driving statewide ban, neither of which Arizona has enacted at the level that the safest states on the report have instituted.
Currently, there are at least three bills at the state Capitol addressing the texting while driving issues: Two tighten current distracted driving laws, but neither mention texting per se. The third bill specifically bans texting while driving, which Cathy Chase with AHAS says shows promise.
"We'd like to see one improvement, one tweak to the current prohibition that adds a prohibition on reading texting while driving."
Chase gives Arizona credit for being tough on driver impairment. If the texting ban were to pass, she said it would likely move Arizona out of the "worst in the state" category for driver safety.
The issue, she said should be everyone's concern.
"The annual economic cost due to motor vehicle crashes in Arizona is $4.18 billion," Chase said, "So, not only is there a lifesaving cost, there's also real impact on all tax payers."
Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety Best and Worst States List 2019