Scientific studies conducted over the last few years are suggesting that texting and driving is as dangerous as severe intoxication is to driving. Back in 2009, Virginia Tech released a study that texting and driving increased the likelihood of an accident by twenty-three times compared to driving with no distractions. That means texting and driving is six times as dangerous as driving with a BAC of .08.
Right now, texting and driving causes fewer deaths than drunk driving, but with how fast people are buying cellular and smart phones, and how necessary they’re becoming to daily life, it’s only a matter of time before texting and driving accidents overtake them – UNLESS we nip the trend in the bud.
Unfortunately, most of us know someone who has answered a text while driving. Cell phones are with us everywhere we go, and they are a major contributor to distracted driving accidents.
But are these types of accidents always reported? No, according to the National Safety Council.
According to a recent investigation of state and federal data, deaths that result from cell phone related accidents are seriously underreported. In a study financed in part by the Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, the advocacy group reviewed approximately 180 fatal car accidents spanning the years of 2009, 2010, and 2011, in which there was strong evidence of cellphone usage by the driver. The results found that only 8% of the 2009 crashes were coded as involving cell phones. Even in cases where drivers openly admitted to using a phone during an accident in which someone was killed, roughly half of the cases cited other causes instead.