The dangerous use of cell phones while driving doesn’t seem to be a problem peculiar to California – it seems to be a nationwide problem. The United States currently stands first in the use of mobile devices behind the wheel, when compared to countries in Europe.
A new study, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, compared mobile device use behind the wheel in the United States with countries like the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Spain and the Netherlands, and found that in the United States, cell phone use while driving as well as texting while driving were widespread behaviors compared to the other countries.
The car accident lawyers at our firm have earlier blogged about the wide disparity in car accident-related deaths between the United States and countries in Europe. There is a wide disparity even when you consider the number of fatalities per vehicle miles driven by motorists in this country.
Although a number of factors have been blamed for this disparity, it is also very likely that this country’s addiction to cell phones behind the wheel is one of the reasons why traffic accident fatality numbers here are much higher than they are in Europe.
The statistics speak for themselves. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study finds that 59% of American motorists used their cell phone to talk within the 30 days before the study, compared to a rate of 21% of motorists in the United Kingdom. When it came to sending or receiving text messages or e-mailing while driving, the survey found that approximately 31% of American drivers admitted to such behaviors, compared to an average of 15% of motorists in Spain.
Clearly, American motorists do not take very well-publicized and well researched safety risks from such practices seriously enough.
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