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Nearly 9 in 10 drivers say those who use cellphones while driving are a safety threat, but nearly 7 in 10 said they used their cellphone behind the wheel at least once in the past month, an AAA study finds.

And nearly a third said they drove while using their cellphone fairly often in that previous month.

Among other highlights of the national survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety issued this month:

–About 95 percent said it’s a safety threat for drivers to text message, email and check social media while behind the wheel. Despite that, more than 26.6 percent reported typing or sending a text or email at least once in the past 30 days and 34.6 percent read a text or email while driving during that time.

–90.3 percent believed distracted drivers are a somewhat or much bigger problem today than three years ago.

–71.3 percent said hands-free devices are  somewhat or much safer. But 57.4 percent who said they used a cellphone at least once in the past 30 days said they usually or always held the phone rather than use a hands-free device.

–86.4 percent said they somewhat or strongly support a law banning texting or emailing while driving.

–48.7 percent support  a total cellphone ban, whether hand-held or hands-free.

–61 percent of those age 16 to 24 and 53.3 percent of those 25 to 39 said they read a text or email while driving at least once in the past 30 days.

–65 percent who talked on a cellphone while driving fairly often or regularly in the past 30 days reported driving 15 mph or more over the speed limit on a freeway at least once during this time. Only 31 percent who reported never using a cellphone behind the wheel admitted to such speeding.

–47 percent who regularly talked on phones also ran a red light compared to 25 percent who never used their phones

–44 percent of frequent cellphone users admitted to drowsy driving; only 14 percent of those who reported not talking on their phones while driving did so.

The study noted that, as in previous AAA studies, “distracted driving remains both a major concern and a prevalent behavior of the American motoring public. As such, the nation’s safety culture is still best described by the phrase ‘do as I say, not as I do.’ ”

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Comments

4 Comments

  1. Dave

    I was rear ended by a woman on her cell phone in 07 I just had another surgery to repair the damage she did to my shoulder. Think people don’t be so selfish.

    January 29th, 2013 8:08 am

  2. smurf

    If people want to take their lives in their hands, that’s fine. But the problem is, they are taking MY LIFE into THEIR hands when they drive distracted. The only thing people should be doing while driving is DRIVING. Don’t even get me started on the eating, apply make-up, doing hair, I even saw one lady painting her nails while on the on-ramp! Are you kidding me?? Eyes forward and DRIVE.

    January 29th, 2013 8:45 am

  3. Safedriver

    If people break cell use laws then it’s only other people who are at risk, not them.
    Maybe we have too many laws. After all, laws just get added to, never dropped so it’s way past too many already.
    The real question is are you going to knowing disobey any law. The answer is increasingly yes. The creep towards anarchy is slow but unstoppable in this country due to building rage at seeing our nations decline in greatness.
    The reason? Corruption, greed, injustice, deception, etc??

    January 30th, 2013 1:12 pm

  4. Hank

    I always drive with 2 hands on the wheel, and so often i almost get hit by another car cause they are on their phone texting and not paying attention. they swerve into other lanes then jet back into their lane really fast. almost as if they were driving drunk.

    February 10th, 2013 12:22 pm

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