TxDOT launches ‘dart those distractions’ game

Last updated: 08-30-2020

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TxDOT launches ‘dart those distractions’ game

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Despite fewer drivers on Texas roadways amid stay-at-home orders, the state experienced about the same amount of vehicle fatalities.

The Texas Department of Transportation announced this week a new web-based augmented reality (AR) game that shows the importance of avoiding distractions while driving.

About 20 percent of crashes in Texas are related to distracted driving and could have been prevented, according to TxDOT.

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

TxDOT said the game is inspired by classic carnival games and players throw darts over their virtual car’s windshield to try to hit balloons that symbolize common driving distractions like eating, programming music or navigation, and self-grooming.

The game is a reminder that distractions can come in a variety of forms, not just texting or talking with a passenger.

“Every driver and every passenger can be impacted by distracted driving and one death is one too many,” TxDOT Executive Director James Bass said. “We are doing all we can to make sure every Texan knows the dangers of driving distracted. 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.”

The new AR game is part of TxDOT’s “Heads up, Texas” campaign that aims to reach Texans through social media, social influencers and digital advertising.

The AR game can be played on any smartphone or tablet by visiting www.dartthosedistractions.com or players can visit the website on a desktop computer to access the game through a QR code.

Players should, of course, never play the game while behind the wheel of a real vehicle.

The “Heads up, Texas” campaign launched Tuesday and is a key component of #EndTheStreakTX, a broader social media and word-of-mouth effort that encourages drivers to make safer choices while behind the wheel, like wearing a seat belt, driving the speed limit, never texting and driving and never driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. 

It has been nearly 20 years since there was a deathless day on Texas roads and the TxDOT campaign asks Texans to do their part to end the streak by committing to driving safely.

Claire Kowalick, a senior journalist for the Times Record News, covers local government, military and MSU Texas. If you have a news tip, contact Claire at ckowalick@gannett.com.


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