Why Texting Causes So Many Automobile Crashes
Written by Greg on March 22, 2015
There’s little doubt that distracted driving has taken on the mantle of a leading cause of automobile accidents in the United States. While texting and driving seems to be the popular scapegoat, distracted driving can include email, checking your cell phone, talking on the phone, changing the radio and so many other distractions.
Nevertheless, the cell phone tends to be one of the more dangerous additions to the rising cause of car accidents in the last decade. In the years before cell phones, distracted driving was a problem but not the epidemic it is today.
Millions of Cell Phone Users in the US
Other experts have opined that distracted driving exceeds drunken-driving and very serious injury automobile crashes. There are 4 out of 10 families in the US who now choose to use a cell phone Italy will play home phone.
Statistical studies have shown that that the number of “smart” mobile phone users currently exceeds 250 million people in the United States with substantial projected growth in the next three years.
According to the national safety Council, 26% of all automobile wrecks involve the use of his cell phone. That is up from the prior year. Not surprisingly, the number one cause of death for teens is automobile accidents. Only 5% of the crashes logged involved texting but 21% involved talking on the cell phone either with a hands-free or handheld phone.
Seconds of Distraction Can be Life or Death
Studies have shown that someone looking at their cell phone to read a text or send an email gives up an average of three car lengths of safety and often much more. This truly is the difference between life and death in many accidents.
Put in perspective, the problem is huge in the United States. Every year over 3000 people are killed in automobile crashes that are caused by a distracted driver. Well over 400,000 people are injured in accidents where distracted driving was a major factor.
Attacking The Problem
While there are studies that suggest that laws affecting texting and cell phone use while driving are ineffective, common sense suggests otherwise. Recently, the state of Texas has sought to revisit the concept of regulating smart phone use while driving. The previous attempts at regulating distracted driving in Texas have been unsuccessful.
Many municipalities in Texas have taken the bull by the horns and past ordinances dealing with driver distraction and cell phone use.
There is little doubt that passing laws regulating the use of smart phones or cell phones while driving can be an important step, however education is needed particularly with younger drivers.
It was not many years ago that a concerted effort to ensure drivers and occupants buckled up for safety started. Education combined with legislation can prove an effective deterrent to unnecessary injuries or death from car accidents.
A recent ad campaign of “one text or call can wreck it all” sums up the problem with using cell phones while driving a motor vehicle. Fortunately, commercial drivers have been prohibited from cell phone use while driving for some time now.
Much as we had the seatbelt campaign of “click it or ticket”, education and at letting all drivers know the true dangers of distracted driving are critical to success.
Parents Must Lead By Example
Additionally, it is extremely important that parents talk to their teenagers and preteens about the dangers of texting and driving and cell phone use and driving. In that regard, the example should be -do as I do and not do as I say.
Remember, it really can wait.