Texting while driving is more dangerous than driving drunk

Almost always, if you tuned in to TV news program or if you read newspapers, there will be news involving vehicular accidents. The difference only of the news are the number of casualties, and how the accident transpired. And despite repetitive warnings not to drive when drunk, drivers seems to ignore them and regrets will set in later after they met the unfortunate accident.

Aside from cellphone use, other distractions that led to vehicle crashes include: Reaching for moving objects inside the vehicle / Looking at an object or event outside of the vehicle / Reading while driving / Applying makeup.

If you think driving while drunk is bad, texting while driving is even worse. Drivers who send text messages while driving are more impaired than those who drive drunk, even at the minimum legal limit for alcohol.

The New York Times recently reported that federal researchers withheld warnings and data about the dangers of driving while on a cell phone to avoid angering Congress. Researchers with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimated that cellphone use by drivers caused 955 fatalities and 240,000 accidents over all in 2002. The research was conducted in 2002-2003.

The studies found that:

– risk of all accidents and of accidents with injuries increases by 38% for cellphone users, and heavy cellphone users are exposed to more than twice the risk as normal users, taking into account age, exposure to risk and driving habits.

– while some crashes during telephone use are xpected based on exposure to driving alone, the actual number of crashes is about 72% higher than the expected number, as estimated by the method of induced exposure.

– Increased risk is likely the consequence of telephone use per se and is not attributable to differences in risk-related behavior between users and non-users of mobile telephones.

– Talking more than 50 minutes per month of cellular phones in a vehicle was associated with an increase of more than five times the risk of traffic collision.

– It cannot be cannot be concluded from the data that hand-held phones lead to higher riskthan hands-free phone.

The rule of thumb here is if you drink don’t drive, if you drive do not text. If you don’t care about your life, please consider the life of others. If you really need to answer a phone call or text someone important, park your car for a while.

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