With the news that just over 10 per cent of all road deaths in Northern Ireland took place in Mid Ulster, police are urging motorists to pay better attention while driving.
So far this year 69 people have been killed on Northern Ireland’s roads, seven of whom were in Mid Ulster.
So for Drive Aware month, the PSNI is urging people not to get distracted by passengers, stop using their mobile phones while driving and to be aware of low light and changing road conditions.
Area commander for Mid Ulster, Supt. Mike Baird said: “Almost everyone has a mobile phone or device of some description that they use to communicate with others via text or social media.
“I want drivers to switch them off before getting in the car - absolutely nothing on your Facebook page Twitter feed or Instagram account should come before your safety and the safety of others.”
As well as the fact that using a mobile phone while driving is breaking the law, he said the number of motorists doing so has risen.
“Careless/distracted driving is expected to be the biggest single cause of death and injuries on roads as a result in 2015. Using a phone whilst driving increases the risk of a collision by a factor of four.”
But he went on to say: “This is not just about mobile phones. Many things can distract the driver. Children playing or arguing. Low light conditions require more concentration from motorists, including motorcyclists.
“Look at the road,” he urged. “Use your mirrors. Don’t answer the phone. Don’t reach down to get something. Don’t get distracted by passengers.”
“We want to help keep people safe. On the roads, footpaths, behind the wheel or behind handlebars.
“Please heed our advice and don’t become a statistic.”