The Texas Department of Transportation launched its annual "Talk, Text, Crash" campaign this month in association with Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
Advertisements featuring a cracked smart phone will appear on television, the radio, in print and on social media. As a part of the ad campaign, TxDOT recorded testimonials from Texans who have suffered the consequences of distracted driving.
Fort Worth resident Kathy Bond recorded an account of her daughter Katrina’s death in 2011 for the campaign. The 22-year-old Katrina died instantly when a driver who was texting rear-ended her on Interstate 35 in Central Texas.
Kathy Bond has fought to outlaw texting and driving in Texas, one of only four states where the practice has not been banned. She said she understands the power a person’s smart phone can hold over them.
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"It’s kind of like Vegas. You keep hearing the 'cha-ching.' you keep hearing the noise and they just feel so utterly compelled to pick it up," she said. "Throw it in the glove box. Throw it in your trunk. Put it somewhere where it’s not that distracting."
In 2015, 463 people were killed in distracted driving crashes in Texas and 3,000 more were seriously hurt.