How many times have you had a near-miss, whether as a driver or a pedestrian; that involved some idiot using their phone while driving?
Technology has conditioned us to automatically respond instantly whenever our phones make a noise. We also live in a more mobile social environment filled with modern conveniences that make us more likely to try and do more than one thing at once. It’s not that uncommon to see people try and eat food or do their makeup while driving.
Studies have shown that around 77% of young adults say they are confident enough to be able to text while driving and 55% of them claimed that it was easy to do. The truth is that only around 2% of people are actually able to multi-task to this degree. Do you think you could fly an F22 at Mach 2 like a fighter pilot? That’s true multitasking.
The statistics about distracted driving tell us the truth, and here it is;
Most crashes happen within the first three seconds of a driver being distracted
Around 23% of all accidents in the United States are caused by someone using their cell phone. To put a number on it the US Department of Transportation say this is roughly 1.6 million crashes each year
Over half a million of these crashes see the driver get injured while around 6000 of them result in the driver being killed as a result of distracted driving
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute calculate that you are six times more likely to crash as a result of being distracted than as a result of being intoxicated
The National Highway Traffic Safety Commission estimate that at any time of day around 11% of drivers will be using their cell phones
There are a few different variations of distracted driving including visual (taking your eyes off the road), manual (reaching for something or moving something), and cognitive (when something takes your mind off driving)
Texting while driving is a visual, manual and cognitive distraction all at the same time! It takes around five seconds to just look at a text or check who is calling you. If you’re driving at 55mph then 5 seconds will take you the length of a football field.
Imagine driving the length of a football field while wearing a blindfold. Would you even attempt to do that, knowing what would happen? That’s what driving while distracted does. When you drive a motor vehicle you have the responsibility of keeping yourself and other road users safe.