Study Reports Teens Texting While Driving… a lot

Not that we didn’t already know that this happens frequently, but the PEW Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project published a report yesterday with some pretty shocking numbers about teenagers texting while driving.

From a survey of 800 teens age 12-17, the study found that one in four (26%) of American teens of driving age say they have texted while driving, and half (48%) of all teens ages 12 to 17 say they’ve been a passenger while a driver has texted behind the wheel.

Among other statistics, the study found that:

  • Half (52%) of cell-owning teens ages 16-17 say they have talked on a cell phone while driving. That translates into 43% of all American teens ages 16-17.
  • 40% say they have been in a car when the driver used a cell phone in a way that put themselves or others in danger.
  • Boys and girls are equally likely to report texting behind the wheel.

Car and Driver Magazine, as well as several other news souces, have reported that texting while driving is more dangerous than driving while drunk.  So why isn’t there the same stigma against it?  This is frightening data and I can only hope that people are starting the realize how serious it is.

What are your thoughts?  Share in the comments!

27 thoughts on “Study Reports Teens Texting While Driving… a lot

  1. John Rob

    If drivers concentrate on the road crashes can be reduced.Drivesafe.ly text to speech engine helps me not to type text messages. Now I concentrate on what I do instead of searching for my phone to read text messages.

  2. John Rob

    If drivers concentrate on the road crashes can be reduced.Drivesafe.ly text to speech engine helps me not to type text messages. Now I concentrate on what I do instead of searching for my phone to read text messages.

  3. video you were talking about

    Here’s the video that you were talking about warning it is pretty graphic. The UK made it as a PSA

  4. video you were talking about

    Here’s the video that you were talking about warning it is pretty graphic. The UK made it as a PSA

  5. EleanorJ

    Texting while driving is dangerous even for so-called super-skilled texters who claim they can text while their phones are inside bags or pockets. Texting with one hand or without looking may seem safer, but it’s still much more dangerous than not texting at all. No matter how you do it, if you’re texting behind the wheel, you’re not focusing on driving – and that should be your main focus until you’ve reached your destination.
    Fortunately, there’s an app that can help break the texting while driving habit – ZoomSafer. ZoomSafer is software for your mobile phone that uses to GPS to know when you’re driving, and automatically locks your keypad so you can’t send texts. If people text you, they’ll get an auto-reply telling them that you’re focused on the road. You can try ZoomSafer for free at http://www.zoomsafer.com.
    As ‘statistic’ points out, texting while driving has been shown to significantly increase the risk of crashing. Why risk it?

  6. EleanorJ

    Texting while driving is dangerous even for so-called super-skilled texters who claim they can text while their phones are inside bags or pockets. Texting with one hand or without looking may seem safer, but it’s still much more dangerous than not texting at all. No matter how you do it, if you’re texting behind the wheel, you’re not focusing on driving – and that should be your main focus until you’ve reached your destination.
    Fortunately, there’s an app that can help break the texting while driving habit – ZoomSafer. ZoomSafer is software for your mobile phone that uses to GPS to know when you’re driving, and automatically locks your keypad so you can’t send texts. If people text you, they’ll get an auto-reply telling them that you’re focused on the road. You can try ZoomSafer for free at http://www.zoomsafer.com.
    As ‘statistic’ points out, texting while driving has been shown to significantly increase the risk of crashing. Why risk it?

  7. statistic

    The comparisons to talking on the phone, changing your ipod, and taking a sip of a tasty beverage are all well and good, but statistics show that texting is FAR more dangerous.
    Risk of accident is 1.3 times more likely for drivers talking on the phone, 2.8 times more likely for drivers dialing a cell phone, and a whopping 23.2 times more likely for drivers texting!! So slow your roll and pull over to text or else ask a passenger to handle the phone.!

    http://www.edgarsnyder.com/car-accident/cell/statistics.html

  8. statistic

    The comparisons to talking on the phone, changing your ipod, and taking a sip of a tasty beverage are all well and good, but statistics show that texting is FAR more dangerous.
    Risk of accident is 1.3 times more likely for drivers talking on the phone, 2.8 times more likely for drivers dialing a cell phone, and a whopping 23.2 times more likely for drivers texting!! So slow your roll and pull over to text or else ask a passenger to handle the phone.!

    http://www.edgarsnyder.com/car-accident/cell/statistics.html

  9. Victoria

    I agree that many people can text without looking and drive, but I was assuming that texting while driving included reading texts. Yes, the danger of texting and driving is probably quite similar to doing anything else while driving, but that texting and driving is given notice because it is done so much more often.

    A kid I went to high school with died in a car accident in the fall of his senior year. His phone records showed that at the exact time he instinctively pulled his phone out of his pocket to read a text he hit the telephone pole and died instantly.

    Please don’t text and drive.

  10. Victoria

    I agree that many people can text without looking and drive, but I was assuming that texting while driving included reading texts. Yes, the danger of texting and driving is probably quite similar to doing anything else while driving, but that texting and driving is given notice because it is done so much more often.

    A kid I went to high school with died in a car accident in the fall of his senior year. His phone records showed that at the exact time he instinctively pulled his phone out of his pocket to read a text he hit the telephone pole and died instantly.

    Please don’t text and drive.

  11. ...

    When I change songs on the ipod when driving I usually want to go to something nearby (an album by the same artist) that I can access without even looking at the ipod.
    I would say that is about as dangerous as taking a drink from something in a cup holder.
    Which yes, is technically more dangerous than both hands on the wheel, however it seems to me that if one is cautious one can drive safely with one hand (as an attentive driver can anticipate when two hands are necessary).

  12. ...

    When I change songs on the ipod when driving I usually want to go to something nearby (an album by the same artist) that I can access without even looking at the ipod.
    I would say that is about as dangerous as taking a drink from something in a cup holder.
    Which yes, is technically more dangerous than both hands on the wheel, however it seems to me that if one is cautious one can drive safely with one hand (as an attentive driver can anticipate when two hands are necessary).

  13. stdnt

    “about as safe as changing songs on an ipod”
    which is actually not safe at all while you’re driving

  14. ...

    I have friends that text and drive with ease. They can also text with the phone still in their pocket, or while holding a conversation.
    I drive one-handed fairly regularly, so if I were able to text without looking at the phone that wouldn’t seem totally unreasonable to me. As long as you are a skilled texter it is about as safe as changing songs on an ipod.

    Admittedly for some people texting and driving is really dangerous and stupid.
    Personally I can text quickly but not without looking at the phone, so I’ve only texted at stop signs/stoplights.

  15. ...

    I have friends that text and drive with ease. They can also text with the phone still in their pocket, or while holding a conversation.
    I drive one-handed fairly regularly, so if I were able to text without looking at the phone that wouldn’t seem totally unreasonable to me. As long as you are a skilled texter it is about as safe as changing songs on an ipod.

    Admittedly for some people texting and driving is really dangerous and stupid.
    Personally I can text quickly but not without looking at the phone, so I’ve only texted at stop signs/stoplights.

  16. stdnt

    Has anyone ever seen that video? Where they re-enact (or just create) a scenario where a girl is texting and everyone in her vehicle dies? It’s so graphic but really hits home.

  17. stdnt

    Has anyone ever seen that video? Where they re-enact (or just create) a scenario where a girl is texting and everyone in her vehicle dies? It’s so graphic but really hits home.

  18. Victoria

    Maybe it’s a regional thing or something, but where I come from there is a HUGE STIGMA against driving and texting. All the hospitals give out don’t text and drive keychains. Isn’t texting more dangerous than talking on the phone because it requires eyes off to be taken off the road?

  19. Victoria

    Maybe it’s a regional thing or something, but where I come from there is a HUGE STIGMA against driving and texting. All the hospitals give out don’t text and drive keychains. Isn’t texting more dangerous than talking on the phone because it requires eyes off to be taken off the road?

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