Distracted driving can be extremely dangerous. In fact, statistics show that in 2009 alone, 5,000 people around the country died in distracted driving accidents, while another 400,000 were injured.
The most dangerous form of distracted driving is texting, because it takes too many resources away from paying attention to the road. When people text while driving, they take their mind off the task at hand, their hands off the steering wheel and their eyes off the road – which can be a recipe for a car crash.
Since texting is one of the primary ways that teens communicate, they are particularly at risk of getting into a distracted driving accident. According to a survey conducted by AT&T, most teens are aware that distracted driving is dangerous, but it does not affect their behavior. The study found that:
- Although 97 percent of teens know texting while driving is dangerous, 43 percent of them admit to doing it anyway
- Seventy-five percent of teens say that their friends text while driving
- Sixty percent of respondents say that texting while they’re sitting at a red light is dangerous, but many of them admit to doing it anyway, and 73 percent look at their phones at red lights
- Eighty-nine percent of teens say that the reason that they text while driving is because they feel pressured to answer a text message within five minutes of receiving it
Most teens also reported that they felt their parents were good role models when it comes to texting while driving, but 41 percent admitted that they have seen their parents send text messages while driving.
The Effectiveness of Texting While Driving Laws
Although many state legislators would like to see a texting while driving ban passed in Florida, there has been no significant action toward enacting this kind of law.
Besides, some research shows that a new law may not actually make a difference in terms of safety. According to a study conducted by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), texting while driving bans have not reduced the amount of car crashes in the states that have these laws, and in some cases, there is evidence that car crashes actually increased after passing such legislation.
However, supporters of texting while driving bans, such as the U.S. Transportation Secretary, say that data indicates that distracted driving accident deaths have not increased – all because states have taken action to ban texting while driving.
If you are injured in an accident because of a distracted driver, call Tampa accident attorney Mike Hancock for your free, no obligation, telephone conversation about compensation for your injuries.