More adults than teens are texting while driving
In a survey conducted for the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, 47% of texting adults admitted to having sent or read a text message while driving, compared to 34% for teen drivers. In the general population, it means that 27% of all adult drivers have read or sent at least once a text message from their vehicle. Almost half of all adults and teens say they have been passenger in a car where the driver was exchanging text messages.
The numbers get even worse for phone conversations. 75% of cell-owning adults admitted to talking on their phone while driving, while a little more than half of teenager drivers (52%) engage in phone conversations while on the road.
There are consequences to those driving distractions. Almost one in six adult drivers (18%) said they physically bumped into another person or an object because they weren’t paying enough attention on the road due to their talking or texting.
The results were surprising, considering how many state legislators are focusing on teen drivers.
“Adults may be the ones sounding the alarm on the dangers of distracted driving, but they don’t always set the best example themselves,” said in a statement Mary Madden, senior research specialist at Pew.
In the end, it shows that all drivers, young or old, can be distracted by their cell phone.
“It is just as hard for adults as it for teenagers to resist chatting with friends and sending off that quick text even in the midst of heavy traffic,” said Lee Rainie, director of Pew’s Internet & American Life Project.
Source: CNN, June 20, 2010