Texting while driving course shows teens dangers

Posted on May 18, 2010

Most teenagers are already aware that texting while driving is dangerous, but many individuals continue to try multitasking while operating a motor vehicle. To combat this, 25 states have already enacted a texting while driving ban. Many have established courses that are meant to show teenagers first hand the real dangers of texting while driving.

In Vermont, schools hold obstacle courses in which teens must navigate sharp turns around orange traffic cones while driving a golf cart and texting. Teens first take the course while only concentrating on driving, and then repeat the action while a friend on the sideline texts them. The teens immediately are able to see how quickly their errors increase when they are distracted and how difficult it is to concentrate on turns and make them accurately.

28 percent of crashes in the United States, amounting to 1.6 million a year, are caused by cell phone use. Drivers who talk on their cell phones are four times more likely to be involved in an accident. Drivers who text increase that risk anywhere from 8 to 23 times. Some states are seeing a 400 percent increase in driving errors due to distracted drivers who text.

Motor vehicle departments and driver's education programs across the country are trying to instill the don't text and drive message early in teenagers. Courses such as the one described above are becoming more prevalent as an effective way to show teens the dangers of distracted driving.

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