Depending on the day, you could find a study that shows that distracted driving rates are actually dropping, or you could find a study that says it just found new evidence that shows distracted driving is at an all-time high. This isn’t to say that any given study is necessarily wrong, it’s just that the context of the study plays a huge role in what the outcome of it is.
With that said, there’s a new study out by AA Northeast that found an astonishing rate of distracted driving among teens who got into car accidents. According to the study, which looked at video evidence of 1,700 accidents or near accidents, 58 percent of the distracted driving wrecks involved teens. 76 percent of rear-end collisions — widely associated with distracted driving — also involved teens.
So what does this mean? Well, there’s really only one conclusion, and it’s a fairly obvious one: cellphones are hugely important in today’s world, and that means that younger people who grow up in this world are naturally more inclined to use these devices in precarious situations.
No matter how many penalties we throw at the situation, distracted driving will always be a problem. Remember, texting while driving or cellphone use while driving are not the only definitions of distracted driving. Daydreaming while behind the wheel of a car is a form of distraction. So is playing with the radio, or turning around in your chair to talk to someone in the backseat. And no matter how you define it, distracted driving, by any driver, is dangerous and negligent.
Source: The Sun Chronicle, “AAA study finds distracted driving the major cause of teen crashes,” Rick Foster, March 25, 2015