Sure, everyone knows that we should stow away our phones when we’re behind the wheel. But, that doesn’t stop people from using their devices on the road — and a new study shows that texting while driving is an even bigger problem than we may have thought. According to the driver analytics company, Zendrive, American drivers use their phones during 88 out of every 100 car trips.
Zendrive analyzed three million drivers for three months, adding up to 570 million car trips between December 2016 and February 2017.
In addition to the staggering 88 percent finding, the study also revealed that people spend an average of 3.5 minutes per hour-long drive using their mobile devices.
As anyone who’s ever spent time behind the wheel knows, damage can be done in a matter of seconds — how many times have we had to suddenly slam on our breaks because the driver in front of us stopped short for some reason?
So, needless to say, distracted driving is a major problem.
Talking on speaker phone, taking selfies, and (of course) texting all fall into the category of distracted driving — even if you only look away from the road for a moment.
Zendrive’s recent findings are consistent with previous studies.
Researchers at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute have found that dialing a phone increases the risk for a car crash by 12 times — and simply reaching for your phone raises the risk of crashing by nearly five times.
There was an increase in traffic-related deaths in 2016 — so, please, put your phone away when you’re driving. If it proves to be a major temptation, stash it in your handbag and throw it in the backseat so it’s not accessible at all. That text or selfie can definitely wait until you’ve parked.