In 2014, at least 26% of auto collisions involved mobile phones, estimating to over 1.3 million crashes. The severity of texting and driving continues to increase as mobile phones become more of a necessity than an accessory.
The minimal amount of time your attention is taken away from the road when you are texting and driving is five seconds. This doesn’t seem like much, but if you are travelling at 55 mph, this equals to driving the length of a football field without looking at the road.
Is texting the worst thing to do while driving?
The statistics below shows the longest “eyes-off-the-road” time out of all distracted activities:
A crash is 1.3 times more likely if the driver is talking
A crash is 1.4 times more likely if the driver is reaching for a device
A crash is 2.8 times more likely if the driver is making a call
A crash is 23 times more likely if the driver is text messaging
Not only is this a big temptation for adults, but it also tempts teenagers. Thirteen percent of drivers ages 18-20 involved in car wrecks admitted to texting and driving or talking on their mobile devices at the time of the crash. Surprisingly, many teens do not see this as a problem. 77% of young adults are very or somewhat confident that they can safely text while driving. 50% of young adult drivers claim it is easy to text while they are driving.
Unfortunately, young adults are not the only ones affected by this. Most of the teens who are texting while driving pick up these habits from their parents. 48% of young adults have actually witnessed their parents sending a text while behind the wheel. This is a bad habit that we all need to change for the better.
Don’t write, send, or read a text message while driving, even when stopped at a red light or in traffic. These actions put you and those around you in danger. You may also be breaking the law. Many states are passing laws to restrict or ban the practice of text messaging while driving. Most importantly, if you are in the car while the driver is texting or making a phone call, please advise them of the dangerous outcomes. One text message is not worth a life.