Driving under the influence of alcohol continues to remain one of the major causes of accidents across the country annually. In fact, driving while intoxicated is the second biggest killer on our roads, killing more people on the roads every year than any other accident cause, except speeding. However, distracted driving has become a major concern for national highway safety agencies, and with good reason. The number of accidents being linked to distracted driving has actually been increasing, while the number of accidents linked to driving under the influence of alcohol has been dropping.
That doesn’t however mean that alcohol intoxication at the wheel is not a serious cause of accidents. The threat from drunk driving is very real, and this continues to be a major highway safety threat.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, however, texting while driving is much more dangerous than drunk driving. According to the data, driving a car while texting is approximately six times more dangerous than driving under the influence of alcohol. Sending or reading text messages while driving takes a person’s eyes away from the road for approximately 4.6 seconds at a time. That is approximately the amount of time that it takes to travel the length of a football field at 55 mph.
According to some statistics, texting while driving causes more than 3000 fatalities every year, and more than 330,000 injuries annually. In fact, texting while driving has now replaced driving under the influence of alcohol as the major cause of accidents involving teenage drivers.
Further, while the proportion of alcohol-related car accidents has been dropping, the number of distracted driving accidents has been increasing. According to federal data, the number of alcohol-related accidents ending in fatalities has dropped approximately 52% since 1982, but the number of distracted driving accidents is actually increasing.
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