Admit it. You’ve probably sent a text while driving before. Maybe you’ve taken a quick peek at an incoming message.
You aren’t alone. 49% of adults in the US admit to texting and driving.
In the moment, texting and driving don’t seem like a big deal. Until one day you aren’t so lucky and cause a deadly crash.
The consequences of texting and driving frequently grab local and national headlines. Here are 5 chilling facts to know.
1. Most Traffic Accidents Involve a Cellphone
Studies have shown that 64% of auto accidents involve a cell phone in some way.
Besides just texting, there are many things on our phones to distract us. Checking an email or typing directions into our GPS app, etc.
All of those things pull your eyes off the road, potentially causing a crash.
2. It’s Worse Than Drunk Driving
Drunk driving has a much bigger stigma attached to it than texting and driving. That’s probably why drunk driving accidents are on the decline.
But, would you be surprised to know that texting and driving is more dangerous?
When you drive drunk, your reaction time is slowed by 12%. When you text and drive, your reaction time is nearly 3 times slower at 35%!
3. It’s the Leading Cause of Teen Death
One of the most upsetting consequences of texting and driving is it causes 11 teen deaths per day.
For inexperienced drivers, getting safely from point A to B is hard enough. Throw in this added distraction and it’s a recipe for disaster. Teens are 400% more likely than adults to crash while they text and drive.
What’s troubling is that 97% of teens know texting and driving is dangerous. Obviously, they are doing it anyway.
4. States Are Getting Tougher on Offenders
Smart phones are a relatively new technology. It’s taken time for the government to catch up and realize how dangerous texting and driving can be.
States are figuring out that they have to crack down on texting and driving offenders.
Most states have some kind of restriction on texting and driving. But so far in 2017, 12 states have already established harsher punishments for distracted drivers.
Right now, that usually means much larger fines. In the future, it could mean punishments that resemble those given for DUI’s.
5. Highway Deaths Are Increasing Yearly
In 2015, highway deaths increased by 7.2%. That’s the largest increase in 50 years. But, it didn’t stop there.
Highway deaths increased by 10% in just the first 6 months of 2016.
There are a few different possible factors for why this is. But, experts believe it largely has to do with more people having access to smart phones.
The Consequences of Texting and Driving are Frightening
Yet, so many people are letting themselves be distracted by it. Hopefully, these chilling statistics have made you think twice about this deadly habit.
Can’t resist the temptation of checking your phone while driving? Don’t risk totaling your BMW (or risk your life)! Put it in the glove box until you reach your destination.
Someday soon, we’ll all have self-driving cars. Then distracted driving won’t be so dangerous.
Want to learn more about the Google self-driving car? Then check out this blog!