AAA Study: Distracted Teen Drivers Bigger Problem Than Thought

31 Mar 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

AAA Study: Distracted Driving Getting Worse, Especially Among Young Drivers.

Have you ever had a romantic adventure while driving? PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — With all the school programs and laws, you’d think distracted driving would be on the decline, but a new AAA study says it’s getting worse, especially among young drivers. The AAA study paints a picture of 16- to 19-year-old drivers speeding, running stop signs, and failing to yield the right of way, and then there are distractions. The AAA’s video contains a number of clips of what happened to teenage drivers who were distracted behind the wheel and while the consequences weren’t too serious in any of the cases, it’s terrifying to think what could have happened.

The observance begins with a study and a survey that underscore the fact that many of us — especially teens — are not paying sufficient attention while operating the deadly weapons known as motor vehicles. Johnson in the news release. “Imagine driving for four or five seconds while blindfolded… that can be the effect of looking down to send a text message. Video from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety comes from cameras installed in cars as a safety program, and it shows time after time distracted teenage drivers taking their eyes off the road and getting into trouble. In the survey, commissioned by Erie Insurance, drivers fessed up to a variety of distracting behavior: texting, smoking, singing or dancing, applying makeup, fussing with their hair and reading.

April has been designated distracted-driving awareness month in an attempt to draw attention to the growing danger caused by people who don’t pay attention to the road. Another report — this one a survey by the Erie Insurance company — found people admit to texting and talking on cellphones at now familiar rates while driving. The most frequent distraction was other passengers, at 14.9 percent; cell phone use was seen in 11.9 percent of the crashes and suspected in another 3.9 percent.

In Pennsylvania, crashes involving drivers younger than 20 have been declining, falling from 29,091 in 2009 to 24,181 in 2013. (Last year’s statistics aren’t yet available.) Fatalities in crashes involving 16- and 17-year-old drivers fell from 40 in 2009 to 27 in 2013, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. Does changing clothes mean removing a jacket or taking off one’s pants? “We did not define ‘romantic encounters’ or ‘going to the bathroom,’ so there could be some room for interpretation on those,” said Erie spokeswoman Cristy Carlson. Erie Insurance’s poll suggested that one cure for texting while driving is maturity: 51 percent of drivers 18 to 34 admitted texting, while 7 percent of those 65 and older said they had done it. Pennsylvania enacted new standards for beginning drivers in 2011, including a ban on having more than one non-family member in the car unless a parent or guardian also is present.

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