The Latest Road Danger: Texting and Driving
These days, one of the biggest distractions for drivers is their electronic device – particularly their cell phone. While effective hands-free devices can make it possible for individuals to more safely hold phone conversations, text messaging and email is a favoured message of communication and it still poses serious risks on the roads.
According to Transport Canada, distracted driving includes the following components:
- Removing your eyes from the road, even for a short period of time
- Removing one or both hands from the wheel for an expended period of time
- Becoming mentally distracted from the task at hand
According to a recent study, the risks of texting and driving are high; a driver that is texting behind the wheel is 23 times more likely to get into an accident. According to daily text messaging statistics among Canadians, the average individual receives such a large number of text messages per day that the opportunity to get into an accident as a result of this type of distracted driving occurs regularly with 43 text messages sent/received each day.
Furthermore, about 30 percent of 800 individuals surveyed in Manitoba admitted that they had engaged in texting and driving. The statistics were even higher among teens, with 68 percent admitting to engaging in dangerous behaviour. Frighteningly enough, among the teens that have engaged in such behavior, 70 percent exhibited a lack of confidence in their ability to drive safely while texting.
Some provinces are cracking down on texting and driving; offering an increasing number of penalties to those that have been caught committing the dangerous offense.
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