According to a report released in April 2013 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 1.18 million American drivers–9%–are using some type of hand-held electronic device at any given daylight moment. The same study also revealed that 660,000 drivers–5%–are using cell phones during a typical daylight moment.
The report states that using a mobile device while driving can distract a driver in three ways. First, using a hand-held device can take a driver’s eyes off the road. Second, activities such as texting can lead a driver to take his or her hands off the wheel. Third, using electronic devices can take a driver’s mind off the road.
Distracted driving has consequences. In 2011, 7% of fatal crashes involved distracted drivers, and of these drivers, 12% of them were using cell phones. About 17% of injury crashes–387,000–were the result of distracted driving. Of this number, 21,000 injuries were the result of cell phone use.
The NHTSA research also revealed the following statistics:
• One in two drivers answer phone calls.
• One in four drivers placed phone calls.
• Three in five young drivers answer calls.
• Two in five young drivers were observed using a hand-held electronic device.
According to the study, drivers should turn off all electronic devices before hitting the road. In addition, passengers should speak up if their driving is texting or on the phone. Passengers can even offer to text or place the call for the driver to help prevent an accident.
Website Resource: Using electronic devices while driving is a serious safety problem