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Distracted Driving – What Are the Risks?

Texting while driving is distracted driving, and should be avoided at all costs. The rise of accidents attributed to texting while driving is unprecedented, and it may cause car accidents resulting in injury or even death. It’s been reported that texting was a driving distraction that caused approximately 18 percent of all fatal crashes in 2010. This is a rough estimate that has only gotten worse with time.

Up to 40 percent of American teens have been in a car when the driver has used a cell phone, putting others in danger. In addition, text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving when not distracted. This is an unacceptable risk of life and property, and a completely avoidable act. Limiting texting while driving is a simple act of ignoring your phone while on the road. It’s simply not worth the risk of potentially causing a catastrophe in the name of texting.

If you’re a parent, it’s important to give teen drivers simple and clear instructions to not use their wireless devices while driving. A common mantra is “on the road, off the phone.” This simple reminder can make all the difference in the world.

Distracted driving is not limited to texting, however. Distracted driving also is under the umbrella of using your phone in other ways such as talking on a mobile phone, browsing Web pages, viewing images, or playing games. Using a cell phone while driving may include taking or transmitting images, playing games, or composing and sending messages. It’s best to turn off the cell phone while driving if you’re constantly tempted to use it.

Be sure to be aware of your surroundings with the least amount of distractions when you’re on the road. While it may be tempting to text and drive, know that the risk simply is not worth it. Distracted driving is dangerous driving, and the only precaution you need to take to make your driving more efficient is to set down your phone. The probability of a car accident when you consciously make an effort to stay more aware is dramatically reduced, and is very much worth the effort.

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