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Mounting Evidence of the Dangers of Distracted Driving

The rapid advancement of technology in this modern world brings with it some great inventions that make life easier and more fun but can also make life a lot more dangerous. Most motorists today have a cell phone with them in the vehicle and the temptation to use it while driving proves to be too great for many. At the same time, the evidence continues to mount that distracted driving, including texting while driving, is an extremely dangerous activity.

Studies

A recent study by the Texas Transportation Institute at Texas A&M University revealed that texting while driving could be more dangerous than previously believed. The results showed that texting caused a driver's reaction time to slow down from a range of one to two seconds to a range of three to four seconds. To put this in perspective, a car will travel about 100 yards in three to four seconds while traveling at highway speeds. The study also found that texting made it more difficult for drivers to stay in their lanes and keep their speed constant.

A different study that was conducted in Britain in 2008 by the Transport Research Laboratory found that texting impaired drivers more than being intoxicated by alcohol at the legal limit. Perhaps the most stunning research of all was reported by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute in 2009. Their study found that drivers of heavy trucks were 23 times more likely to get in a collision while texting.

Legislation

Currently, 34 states have banned texting while driving for all drivers. In Texas, texting while driving has not yet been banned. Such legislation reached the desk of Gov. Rick Perry in June 2011 but was vetoed. Two other bills, on the other hand, have been passed into law recently - one bans texting and cell phone use for teenage drivers while the other bans cell phone use for all drivers in school crossing areas.

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