TxDOT launches game to combat distracted driving

HARLINGEN — From texting and talking on the phone to eating and drinking, these everyday actions could cause serious distractions for motorists who do them while behind the wheel.

Despite stay at home orders and less traffic these past few months, Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) officials say the state continues to see the same amount of fatalities on roadways.

To help combat these numbers and creatively educate motorists about the dangers of distracted driving, TxDOT launched a new web-based augmented reality (AR) game on Tuesday, as part of its “Heads Up Texas” campaign.

The game, “Dart Those Distractions,” is designed to increase awareness about the dangers of distracted driving in an interactive and engaging way that resonates with all ages.

The classic carnival inspired game has players throw darts over a car windshield to hit balloons, which symbolize driving distractions like eating, programming music or navigation and self-grooming. The symbols aim to serve as a reminder that distracted driving isn’t just about texting or talking from the driver’s seat.

According to a TxDOT press release, around one in five crashes on Texas roads are caused by distracted driving and all of them are preventable.

TxDOT executive director James Bass stated that every driver and passenger can be impacted by distracted driving.

“One death is one too many. We are doing all we can to make sure every Texan knows the dangers of driving distracted,” Bass stated. “Distracted driving crashes are preventable and we hope this new AR game will help drivers realize there are more dangers than just your cell phone in the car.”

Dart Those Distractions can be played on any smartphone or tablet by visiting www.dartthosedistractions.com. Players can visit the website on a desktop computer to access the game through a QR code.