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Texting is now leading cause of death for teen drivers

Posted by on May. 10, 2013 at 4:11 PM
  • 10 Replies


Study: Texting is now leading cause of death for teen drivers

  • Article by: DELTHIA RICKS , Newsday
  • Updated: May 9, 2013 - 8:07 PM

Nearly half of those surveyed ages 15-18 said they had sent messages while behind the wheel.

– Texting while driving has become a greater hazard than drinking and driving among teenagers who openly acknowledge sending and reading text messages while behind the wheel of a moving vehicle.

The number of teens who are being injured or killed as a result of texting while driving has skyrocketed as mobile-device technology has advanced. Researchers at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park estimate more than 3,000 annual teen deaths nationwide from texting and 300,000 injuries.

The practice now surpasses the number of teens who drink and drive — a hazard that has been on a dramatic decline in recent years, researchers say.

An estimated 2,700 young people die each year as a result of driving under the influence of alcohol and 282,000 are treated in emergency rooms for injuries suffered in motor-vehicle crashes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Dr. Andrew Adesman and a team of Cohen investigators found that, between September 2010 and December 2011, among 8,947 teenagers aged 15-18 nationwide, an estimated 49 percent of boys admitted to texting while driving compared with 45 percent of girls.

Texting also increased with age. Only 24 percent of 15-year-olds tapped out messages while driving, compared with 58 percent of 18-year-olds, the data showed.

“A person who is texting can be as impaired as a driver who is legally drunk,” said Adesman, noting that a texting driver is distracted from the movement of traffic and the function of the vehicle.

The new data contrast sharply with findings about drinking and driving among teens. The CDC reported last fall that alcohol use among teen drivers has decreased by 54 percent since 1991. Texting, however, has quickly grown in the last five to seven years, said Adesman, chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen. “Fifty percent of high school students of driving age acknowledge texting while driving.”

“When we compared states where there are no laws [barring texting while operating a moving vehicle] and states where there are laws on the books, we found there was no difference in their responses,” Adesman said. “Clearly, the laws are not effective.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration acknowledged that distracted driving of all kinds is a growing hazard.

Agency officials describe texting as among the worst of driver distractions because conversing by text simultaneously involves manual, visual and mental distractions.

Observational surveys cited by the agency suggest that more than 100,000 drivers are texting at any given daylight moment, while more than 600,000 drivers are using handheld phones while operating a car.

http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/health/206859771.html?refer=y

by on May. 10, 2013 at 4:11 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Barabell
by Barbara on May. 10, 2013 at 4:12 PM

Do you talk to your teens about the dangers of texting while driving?

Are you surprised that texting increases with age (per the second I highlighted in red)?

SugarrCane
by Member on May. 10, 2013 at 4:19 PM
1 mom liked this

Wow, this is scary considering my son just got his permit and is constantly texting!  We need to have a talk.

luckysevenwow
by Platinum Member on May. 10, 2013 at 4:23 PM
I'm not surprised by the increase with age, they think with more years if driving that they are able to handle texting and driving. Teens/adults know the danger but we always think it won't happen to us.


My dd's roommate recently got in an accident that totaled his truck and left him with a ton if stitches (over corrected when some high winds pushed him) after getting him out the first thing the police did was take his phone to see if he'd been texting, he hadnt but it's a shame that the police even have to do that.
atlmom2
by Susie on May. 10, 2013 at 4:50 PM
Yep, they take the phones, first thing now.


Quoting luckysevenwow:

I'm not surprised by the increase with age, they think with more years if driving that they are able to handle texting and driving. Teens/adults know the danger but we always think it won't happen to us.





My dd's roommate recently got in an accident that totaled his truck and left him with a ton if stitches (over corrected when some high winds pushed him) after getting him out the first thing the police did was take his phone to see if he'd been texting, he hadnt but it's a shame that the police even have to do that.

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drfink
by Emily on May. 10, 2013 at 5:27 PM

Not suprised.We talk endlessly about texting ,it terrifies me.My 16 y.o. is a bit of a old lady driver...yay.... so he is a mild worry but my college student loves to text.

My husband used to text and drive till I told him in all seriousness he wouldn't be allowed to drive me or our children AND he wouldn't be riding with usI had to do that to break the habit ,he was setting a horrible example..Finally he got how serious I was .

GleekingOut
by Silver Member on May. 10, 2013 at 8:55 PM
My daughter has her permit. She seems 100% against texting and driving and actually yelled at a friend of hers who told her that he'd just sent her a text while driving. I'm not too worried
TranquilMind
by Bronze Member on May. 11, 2013 at 3:22 AM

 I have a rule that all phones are put away when driving.  There is nothing so important that you have to take it out and look while you are moving. 

So, I THINK they will follow it, because their Dad and I follow it too.  I hope. 

You can't be one who is on your phone yourself yet expect the kid to put it away though.

Quoting SugarrCane:

Wow, this is scary considering my son just got his permit and is constantly texting!  We need to have a talk.

 

leighp1
by on May. 11, 2013 at 5:08 AM
1 mom liked this

There are providers out there that disable the texting while driving over 25 mph.  When my dd gets her license, this will be added to her phone.  She has her permit and she is very good, but of course she is, I am with her so she wants to be good.  I personally think that if the car is in drive, there should be a block to where the phone won't work.  It's not only texting, it's the sound of it going off and then the fear that "oh I might be missin something important" and going to grab the phone.  It's so scary out there.  My dd and I used to take photos of people texting and driving.  I said we need to post them somewhere. "Watch out for these texters" blog or something.

Crafty8852
by on May. 11, 2013 at 7:37 AM

My son is 3 years away from getting his permit...I hope by then they do have an app that disables the phone when the car is moving at all! 

Quoting leighp1:

There are providers out there that disable the texting while driving over 25 mph.  When my dd gets her license, this will be added to her phone.  She has her permit and she is very good, but of course she is, I am with her so she wants to be good.  I personally think that if the car is in drive, there should be a block to where the phone won't work.  It's not only texting, it's the sound of it going off and then the fear that "oh I might be missin something important" and going to grab the phone.  It's so scary out there.  My dd and I used to take photos of people texting and driving.  I said we need to post them somewhere. "Watch out for these texters" blog or something.


daisykat
by on May. 11, 2013 at 2:40 PM
Quoting Barabell:

Do you talk to your teens about the dangers of texting while driving?

Are you surprised that texting increases with age (per the second I highlighted in red)?



Minnesota has a no texting law, right? I'm just across the border and I'm not sure if Wisconsin does. My 16-year-old shuts off his phone when he's driving so it's not even alerting him to a call or message. Thank God he's smart that way. He makes enough rookie mistakes behind the wheel, I don't need texting added to the mix. My good friend's daughter, however, drove into the ditch 3 weeks ago because she was texting while driving. She wasn't hurt but the car was totaled.
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