The Dangers of Distracted Driving

Aug 14, 2012

By Staff Writer State Farm™ Employee

The statistics on distracted driving continue to pile up, and they’re not good.

  • 3,092 people were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver in 2010, and an additional 416,000 were injured.1
  • 49 percent of drivers 35 and younger who have cell phones send or read text messages while driving.2
  • 77 percent of young adult drivers are “very to somewhat confident” that they can safely drive and text.3

If you are a distracted driver—or you know someone who is—help break the habit with these tips.

Get the facts.

  • The total number of text messages sent or received in the United States was more than 196 billion in June 2011 alone. That’s up approximately 50 percent from June 2009.4
  • Drivers who use cell phones while driving are four times more likely to get into crashes serious enough to injure themselves.5
  • The National Safety Council estimates that text messaging could increase the crash risk level by 8 to 23 times over that of non-texting drivers.6

Know your distractions. Your cell phone is the biggest distraction, but it’s not the only attention-hogging activity you can do behind the wheel. Eating, grooming, fiddling with the radio, reading a map or GPS and anything else that takes your attention from the road are distractions—and activities that can wait until you’re safely parked in a legal parking space.

Resist the temptation to talk and text. Out of sight, out of mind. As soon as you get in the driver’s seat, turn your phone’s volume and vibrate function off and put your phone where you can’t reach it. Find more prevention tips at stoptextsstopwrecks.org.

Commit to being an alert driver. At distraction.gov, you can take a pledge to drive phone-free. Make a commitment to eliminate distractions when you drive and encourage your family and friends to do the same.

For more facts and statistics about distracted driving, visit distraction.gov.

 
1 distraction.gov
2 2011 Harris Interactive

3 2011 Ad Council 

4 CTIA—The Wireless Association

5  McEvoy, S.P.; Stevenson, M.R.; McCartt, A.T.; Woodward, M.; Haworth, C.; Palamara, P.; and Cercarelli, R. 2005. Role of mobile phones in motor vehicle crashes resulting in hospital attendance: a case-crossover study. British Medical Journal 331(7514):428
6 Annual Estimate of Cell Phone Crashes


The information in this article was obtained from various sources. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. The information is not intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. Nor is it intended to effect coverage under any policy. State Farm makes no guarantees of results from use of this information. We assume no liability in connection with the information nor the suggestions made.
 

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