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texting while driving

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texting while driving
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2/20/13
Dangers of Texting and Drunk Driving Have you ever sent a text while driving? Texting while driving has been raising issues in today’s society as 46 percent of teens, and more than one in five drivers have admitted to texting while driving (source). This hazardous habit has lead to many studies to expose the dangers of texting while driving, and how it compares to drunk driving to all drivers. Texting while driving and drunk driving cause an increase in automobile accidents and health factors that are extremely dangerous. Reckless driving habits such as texting and drunk driving cause thousands of accidents each year, resulting in many injuries and deaths. In 2010, more than 1.4 million arrests were made for drivers operating under the influence of alcohol and drugs (Impaired Driving 1). In total, 10,228 people were killed in alcohol related crashes in 2010, accounting for 31 percent of all crashes in the United States (Impaired Driving 1). In addition, over 50 percent of teens have admitted to texting behind the wheel (Texting While Driving 2). Although the legal consequences are nowhere as steep as drunk driving, the numbers are just as scary. First of all, lets all admit it. Every one of us has either sent a text message or been in a car with a driver sending texts. The scary truth is that in 2009, 5,474 deaths and nearly 450,000 injuries were sustained in car crashes. Of these, roughly 20 percent of deaths and 5 percent of injuries were caused by the use of a cell phone (Texting While Driving 1). Unfortunately, most people, including myself, were or still are completely unaware of how dangerous texting while driving is. Yet the scariest aspect of this all is that social media and smart phones are continuing to grow, providing more distractions to thousands of drivers. Who would ever think sending a text can be as dangerous as drunk driving? Not only do the number of deaths and accidents pose a serious threat, but the health factors they present are extremely dangerous. Drunk driving has many extremely dangerous health factors that often lead to crashes and deaths. The first of many risks it presents is the reaction time a driver has while intoxicated. In a study conducted, a sober driver takes .54 seconds to hit the brakes. In comparison, it takes a legally drunk driver with a BAC of .08 an extra four feet to hit the brakes (Texting And Driving Worse 1). Obviously, the more intoxicated a driver is, the more time it will take them to react to cars stopping ahead of them. In 2010, 112 million cases of drunk driving were reported (get source name..). This presents a serious threat not only to the drunk driver, but to many innocent drivers out on the road. On top of that, texting while driving also has many dangerous effects. In the same study found earlier, it was discovered that reading a text takes an additional 70 feet to hit the brakes compared to an unimpaired driver. The scariest part of this all may be that most people do not recognize that texting while driving is just as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than drunk driving. Whether you are a teen or an adult, I am sure you have seen, been with, or sent a text message yourself while driving. Personally, I have been in a car and have been the driver of a car in which the driver has sent a text. In addition, I see people reading and texting on their phones every day when I am driving around. The scariest part is that most people, including me in the past, are completely unaware of the dangers texting while driving presents. Also, the average teen sends more than 3,000 texts per month and 64 percent have admitted to texting while driving. It is necessary to promote the dangers of these activities to all drivers and help prevent more deaths on the road. In conclusion, distracted driving, especially texting while driving can be just as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than drunk driving. From now on, wait to use your phone or pull aside the road before checking it. Doing so will help save roughly 6,000 or more lives per year. Next time you get a text while driving, might it cross your mind that it is as dangerous as drunk driving? From now on, pull over or wait to respond, it could save your life.

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