Cell Phones and Car Crashes

text-and-driveCell Phones and car crashes are as American as the glorification of fake news and military violence. America’s cell phone obsession comes at an awful steep price. Drivers using cell phones cause 1.6 million auto crashes each year, according to the National Safety Council. Some 330,000 accidents are caused by texting while driving. One of every four car accidents involves texting and driving. Texting while driving is even more dangerous than drinking and driving; a driving texter is six times (6x) more likely to cause an accident than a drunk driver.

Teen Texters fare worse than Adults
Eleven teenagers are killed every day in the U.S. as a result of texting while driving. A Triple poll shows 94% of teens acknowledge the dangers of texting and driving, yet 35% admit they do it anyway. So many will be killed by this habit, or will kill or maim others. Statistics show that twenty-one percent (21%) of teen drivers involved in fatal crashes were distracted by cell phones. Teen drivers are four times (4x) more likely than adults to get into car crashes or near-crashes when talking or texting on a cell phone.

Texting & Driving tops Danger List
Texting while driving is by far the most dangerous cell phone activity. (Though holding it tightly to the head may also get you cancer, eventually.) Answering a text takes focus from driving for roughly five seconds, which, at 55 mph, gives a distracted driver the length of a football field to do some damage. That leads to a lot of dead teens, or their unwitting passengers, or other drivers or pedestrians trying to share the road.

It is quite ironic how many continue to text and drive and kill and maim one another, because 94% of Americans support a ban on texting and driving, while 74% support a ban on the use of a hand-held cell phone.

Cell Phone Distractions
At any given moment in the day, roughly 660,000 people are distracting themselves with their phones while commanding a two-ton murder machine.  Doesn’t anyone have time just to drive anymore?  How is all of our so-called “multi-tasking” improving our lives when we are killing one another at such appalling rates?

U.S. Cell Phone Driving Statistics – 2013
In 2013, 3,154 people were killed in distraction-related crashes. Roughly 424,000 people were injured in crashes involving a distracted driver. (That is a LOT of people. Imagine the cost, and what is lost.)  In 2013, 10% of all drivers aged 15-19 involved in fatal crashes were reported to be distracted at the time of the crash.

Teen Statistics
Drivers would do well to be especially wary of teenaged drivers. You might want to  take a road  that bi-passes that local school down the street. Consider: one-fourth of teen drivers respond to at least one text message every time they drive, while 20% of teens and 10% of parents report that they engage in multiple life-threatening text message exchanges while driving.

Meanwhile, nearly half (48%) of all death machine operators admit to answering their cell phones while driving.

Cell Phones and Car Crashes

Of those drivers who answer their cell phones, 58% continued to drive while talking. In the survey, 24% of drivers reported that they are also willing to make a phone call while driving. One in ten drivers surveyed said they sometimes send text  messages or emails while driving. Of the drivers surveyed, 14% said they read text messages or emails while driving.

Texting Pedestrian Study – 2012
The only thing more annoying than waiting for the texter in front of you to drive his car through the green light may be waiting for the ambulating texter to move her butt across the crosswalk. We all know the interminable time it seems to take to watch texters react to the three dimensional world outside of their text bubbles.

University of Washington researchers studied 20 of Seattle’s busiest intersections. They found that walkers texting are four times less likely to look before crossing the street, cross in crosswalks, or obey traffic signals. They also found walking texters take an average of two seconds longer to cross the street. (Aargh!)

Cell Phone Accident
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it may have been caused by a texting driver, or one distracted by a cell phone. In such cases, we typically secure the perpetrator’s cell phone records.  Contact us for a free legal consultation.

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