The Road Ahead September 2010

AAA takes aim at distracted driving and offers financial assistance.

AAA and DOT tackle distracted driving

Two seconds. That’s how long it takes for the crash risk to double when a driver looks away from the road.

Considering that nearly two out of three motorists admit to driving while distracted, it’s not surprising that experts see distracted driving as a major safety threat. Now the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and AAA are making that threat a top priority.

Both took initiative in the last year to combat distracted driving. AAA has mounted a national advocacy effort to enact bans on texting while driving in all 50 states, and DOT launched an unprecedented campaign to focus public awareness, law enforcement, and government and media attention on the issue. The two organizations, along with a host of other advocacy groups, want to reduce crashes and save lives by preventing dangerous, distracting behavior behind the wheel.

“It’s an all-out campaign,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, who last fall hosted the DOT’s first Distracted Driving Summit. The two-day event in Washington, D.C., included government officials, telephone and automotive industry representatives, tra≈c safety researchers, distracted driving crash victims and their families, and advocates such as AAA and the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

Prior to the 2009 DOT summit, AAA announced a legislative campaign to promote laws banning texting while driving in all 50 states. AAA clubs have been instrumental in the passage of texting bans around the country, and more than half of all states have made it illegal to read or compose a text message while driving.

New financial video series

Are you saving for a vacation, a vehicle, a home, or retirement? To help you put together a sound savings program, AAA recently made available on the Internet a series of how-to videos. With the era of easy credit over and rates of return near zero on many savings products, it can be difficult for consumers to decide on which ones meet their short- and long-term goals.

The videos, available at, cover three common investment types—money market funds, certificates of deposit, and individual retirement accounts. You’ll learn the advantages of each and which ones are appropriate for meeting specific savings objectives.

These videos—as well as a series of clear, straightforward articles on financial literacy also available on the site—are intended as introductions to each topic and are not meant to provide specific financial advice to individual consumers. 

This article was first published in September 2010. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.


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