It may obvious after seeing many ad campaigns that texting while driving is dangerous, but while driving I still see people looking down at their phones rather than looking up at the road.
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute found out that drivers that are distracted from the road due to texting are 23 times more likely to get in a car crash than a driver who isn’t texting. It’s estimated that 23% of all crashes each year are due to the use of a cell phone, that’s 1.3 million crashes.
These statistics might be surprising, but if you think about the math behind it, a person driving at a rate of 55 miles per hour looks down at their phone for 4 seconds travels a total of 323 feet, that’s longer than a football field! Traveling that far completely blind is crazy to think about. A lot can happen in the length of a football field. The car in front of you could slam on their breaks, an animal could be attempting to cross the road, or a person could be.
The problem is mainly in the younger drivers who have a false confidence of their abilities to maintain full control of their vehicles while operating their cell phones. 77% of young adult drivers say they are very or somewhat confident that they can safely send a text while driving and 55% say it is very easy to do it.
Young drivers aren't the only ones guilty of this. 27% of adults admit that they have sent and received a text while driving.
What can be done?
You can see videos and hear statistics about texting and driving all day long and it still would stop some people for doing it until it’s too late. The biggest and easiest thing that can be done is to be a role model, as a parent don’t be talking on the phone, sending, or looking at a text message, especially when your kids are in the vehicle with you. If you are driving with others make sure your phone is put away and that you don’t use it, this will set a good example for them. If you are riding with a close friend, family member, or someone you don’t know as well, there is no shame in asking them to not use their phone if you see them using it. There are already many states that have made texting and using your cell phone while driving illegal. That should be reason enough to set the phone down. Your life or the life of others is more important than a text or a phone call. It can wait.
Thank you for your time and attention. Let’s make it safe this Monday.
Demand Generation Specialist, Lift’n Buddy, a Southworth Company