The Dangers of Using Phones and Texting While Driving
A naturalistic study of over 3,000 drivers found that using phones or texting while driving increased the risk of an accident. Drivers who used their phones while driving were four times more likely to crash than those who did not. The increased risk could be due to a number of different reasons.
Distracted driving caused by using phones and text messages while driving increases the risk of car accidents. A naturalistic study of more than 3,000 drivers found that drivers who used their cellphones and/or text messages during a crash were more likely to cause a crash. This increased risk is beyond the level that is considered socially optimal. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the amount of people distracted by their cellphones while driving.
Distracted driving can be caused by two different types of distractions: manual and cognitive. Manual distractions can involve taking your hands off the wheel or feet from the pedals, and cognitive distractions can be anything that keeps the driver’s mind from being focused on the road. For example, texting or talking on the phone while driving can cause a driver to miss important information. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, about 10 percent of drivers engage in these activities while behind the wheel.
Cell phone distraction
Distracted driving is a serious problem that affects millions of Americans each year. Its impact is widespread and can result in fatal and serious injuries. There are several factors that contribute to this problem, including human behavior and state laws. Most states have enacted laws to restrict cell phone use while driving, with some outlawing the use of cell phones while driving entirely.
In a recent study, researchers examined the effects of cell phone use on the performance of drivers. They found that drivers who were talking on the phone were four times more likely to be involved in an accident than those who were not. Even when using a hands-free phone, driver performance was not improved by using it.
Bans on texting while driving
Recent news coverage has drawn attention to the dangers of texting while driving. Research conducted by the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas, and the Highway Loss Data Institute found that drivers who text while driving had an increased risk of auto accidents. However, the study did not measure crash-related emergency room visits.
Bans on texting while driving have a number of potential benefits. For instance, primary enforcement bans permit law enforcement officers to pull over drivers who are using their cell phones while driving. These bans have been linked to fewer car crash hospitalizations, especially among younger drivers. Secondary enforcement bans allow officers to issue tickets for texting while driving only when they pull over drivers for other traffic violations. These bans are most effective for young novice drivers and are associated with a reduction in crash-related emergency room visits by 40 percent.
Effects of bans on crashes
A study found that banning texting and phone use while driving reduced crashes by about four percent. These measures reduced fatalities and serious injuries as well as emergency room visits and hospital stays. They also reduced crashes that caused minor injuries. The study looked at data from 16 U.S. states, with the exception of Arizona, where a ban did not apply.
Researchers also looked at the effects of hand-held cellphone bans on fatalities and crashes. They found that bans on hand-held cellphone use reduced fatalities among drivers, but not those involving non-drivers. The study also examined the impacts of cell phone bans on motorcyclists and pedestrians. In addition, they examined the variations in fatality rates between states.
Effects of bans on injuries
Studies have shown that bans on using phones and texting while driving reduce injuries and deaths. However, the effects are variable. Some studies have found no difference between texting bans and those for calling-only. Others, however, found that banning texting while driving and using a hands-free device reduced injuries and fatalities.
Despite these results, more research is needed to understand why bans work. Currently, 18 states have banned most or all forms of handheld cellphone use while driving. The study aimed to examine the impact of these bans on driver fatalities, but not other forms of distracted driving. Evan Anderson, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania, was part of the research team.
Effects of bans on deaths
A recent study has found that banning texting while driving has a modest impact on traffic fatalities. The number of traffic fatalities decreased by about three percent in states that banned texting by drivers in the age range of 15 to 21 years. However, the effect of texting bans on traffic fatalities among drivers older than 65 was less pronounced.
This study found no significant differences in the number of driver fatalities caused by texting and calling while driving. The analysis of bans by enforcement level excluded the effects of alcohol, which is a known contributory factor in driver fatalities.