Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents in the US. This has always been a problem, with drivers routinely eating, changing the music, putting on make-up, and even shaving while behind the wheel. But the problem has gotten far worse thanks to cell phones. Despite laws prohibiting the use of handheld devices while driving, drivers are still calling, texting, checking socials, and scrolling playlists when they should be paying attention to the road.
According to Aaron Cowen of FleetMode (a company that’s using tech to prevent cell phone distractions for drivers), disabling the use of cell phones while driving “has been shown to reduce accidents by 30% over a million-mile study.”
Unfortunately, most drivers don’t yet have this distraction-proof tech. And that’s why Texas added the Impact Texas Drivers program to the Texas Administrative Code. Let’s take a closer look at the program and show you how to get your Impact Texas Drivers Certificate.
What Is the Impact Texas Drivers Program?
The Impact Texas Drivers program is a required portion of your drivers ed course. It consists simply of a free video, showing the devastation of distracted driving accidents. You’ll see true stories of people who were deeply impacted by a distracted driving accident.
We all know intellectually that distracted driving is dangerous, but many drivers have a difficult time imagining something so horrible happening to them or their loved ones. The Impact Texas Drivers video confronts the audience with stories of people who thought and felt the same way until their lives were changed forever by an accident that resulted in severe physical injuries or even death.
Who Is Required to Complete the Impact Texas Drivers Program?
The Impact Texas Drivers program is now required for all drivers ages 16 to 24 who will be taking the driving skills test to get their Texas driver’s license.
To make the shared personal stories as relatable and as impactful as possible to each future driver, the program is tailored to three distinct groups:
16- and 17-year-olds: Impact Texas Teen Drivers (ITTD).
18- to 24-year-olds: Impact Texas Young Drivers (ITYD).
Those 25 and older: Impact Texas Adult Drivers (ITAD).
The ITTD video is two hours long, and the ITYD video is one hour.
Drivers aged 25 or older are not currently required to complete the Impact Texas Drivers program, as the video for this age group has not yet been published. However, it is highly recommended that this ITAD group watch the video designed for the ITYD group. It is only an hour’s investment that could potentially save your life or the life of another, so there is no reason not to complete the program.
How Do You Get Your Impact Texas Drivers Certificate as an Adult?
The first step in getting your Impact Texas Drivers certificate as an adult is to register for the Impact Texas Young Drivers online through the Impact Texas Drivers’ website. Since the ITAD program is still being developed, you will register for the ITYD program, even if you are 25 years old or older.
Once you are registered, you will gain access to the video. And once you have watched the video start to finish, you’ll be able to download and print your Impact Texas Drivers certificate.
Your printed certificate will be required when you arrive at the DPS to take your driving test. It’s also important to note that you must earn your Impact Texas Drivers Certificate within 90 days prior to taking your driving exam.