What are the facts?
As personal electronic devices become more common, chances are that you know someone who has texted while driving. TV, radio and social media promote public service announcements encouraging people not to text and drive. So, what are the facts?
Risky business – Texting creates 20x the crash risk of a non-distracted driver.
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) found that text messaging creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted. The VTTI states that driving is a visual task and non-driving activities that draw the driver’s eyes away from the roadway (such as texting, dialing, and use of a laptop or dispatching device to perform complex tasks) should always be avoided.
Holding the phone near the windshield “for better visibility” doesn’t work.
When a driver’s eyes are not on the task of driving and attention is focused elsewhere, even trying to compensate by holding the phone near the windshield won’t lower the risks associated with texting and driving. The minimal amount of time a driver’s attention is taken off the road when texting while driving is 5 seconds, the same amount time it takes at 55mph to cover the length of a football field.