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TXTING @ THE WHEEL BAD 4 U?
April 29th, 2012
12:01 PM ET

TXTING @ THE WHEEL BAD 4 U?

News flash: Texting while driving can have serious, catastrophic consequences.

All sarcasm aside, you will most likely have heard this message by now and seen the PSA's meant to convince you that this is a bad idea.  You've heard that many states ban texting while driving and hopefully are heeding the warnings.   But some of the youngest drivers still don't realize that it is a problem.

Some teens, however, do and are taking matters into their own hands.

Determined to educate their peers about on the dangers of texting while driving, a group of student leaders in Oklahoma started Generation tXt.

They focus on those recently behind the wheel for the first time.

Researchers at the University of Oklahoma School of Community Medicine advised the students while the teens conducted a study among thirty young adults, ages 15-19.

More than half had been driving less than a year. They shared one commonality - they were all proficient in texting.

"They [teenagers in general] know it's dangerous," said Dr. Mark D. Fox, who advised the teens. "They know it's their No. 1 distraction and they continue to do it."

Fox said 80% of them "admit at least occasionally that they will text while driving."

"The risk is that if you ban texting while driving, people will still do it, they'll just hide it below the level of the dashboard, which then diverts their eyes down and may put them more at risk," added Fox.

For the study, the students drove using simulators. The number of crashes with other cars and pedestrians were measured, along with the amount of near collisions and other infractions.

The young drivers swerved between lanes and had more wrecks and near misses when texting, regardless if the phone was placed out of sight or not.

Glade Inhofe, a high school student and the main author, said the results show there is no 'safe' or 'better' position. Out of sight does not equal out of mind.

Other new research from the University of Washington finds that compulsive cell phone use - simply anticipating calls and messages - was significantly associated with prior crashes among undergraduate students.

The message: you don't have to be actively texting or talking to be headed for the danger zone.


soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. Portland tony

    Significance? BTW the article mentioned young adults ages 15 to 19. These people are usually called adolescents. Young adults start at 20. :)

    April 29, 2012 at 18:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Rhodes

    How 'bout doubling the insurance rates of anyone ticketed for texting while driving for 5 years or so, and putting the money into helping offset high insurance costs for other young drivers...

    This would give them something to text about.

    April 30, 2012 at 08:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Juli

      How is it the private industry of insurance's responsibility to "fix" this problem? If insurance companies decide to charge more it will be for their own benefit, not some "public good".

      April 30, 2012 at 10:08 | Report abuse |
    • Joe Camel

      What are the cell phone makers doing about this problem? Nothing!

      April 30, 2012 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
  3. Just Some Guy

    News Flash: everything, except for paying complete attention to driving, will negatively affect driving. But guess what, there is absolutely no way to stop this ... ever!!! Talking on your cellphone, texting, eating, puttin on makeup, eating, drinking, talking to the passengers in your car, listening to the radio, thinking about work, thinking about home; all of those things will cause distracted driving, and there is no way to stop it. So you turn your phone off while you are driving. Just like this article points out, you could be distracted by thinking about talking or texting on your cell phone. "Who could be trying to reach me? Does the boss, my wife/husband, kids need to get hold of me?" The problem isn't distracted driving, the problem is too many people on the roads at the same time. The problem is a life that is too busy.

    April 30, 2012 at 09:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Juli

      And the solution is better and more efficient public transportation– how many high speed rail crashes happen as a result of texting? Or eating, or falling asleep– if there was an efficient way for me to travel the 33.5 miles to work every day via public transit, I would LOVE it. It would give me an extra 2 hours per day to work, read, plan, sleep, or whatever. But since there's not, I spend that time sitting in SF Bay Area traffic and have AT LEAST 1 near miss per week from some idiot that either isn't paying attention (for a variety of reasons).

      April 30, 2012 at 10:12 | Report abuse |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      @Just Some Guy
      Every report that has come out on the subject says it is distracted driving. You sound like a complete fool trying to justify bad behavior.

      April 30, 2012 at 10:50 | Report abuse |
    • Len

      @Juli, I don't know about public transportation where you live but it ain't no country club in most places with over crowded cars, loud mouths and lots of people who don't see the importance of showering dailiy!!!

      June 7, 2012 at 13:38 | Report abuse |
  4. zulux

    It even goes beyond that.....even if your deep subconsious mind that anticipates texting, will increases the amount of CO2 into the environment.....or was it that it will make the babies smoker.... humm...I dunno...but it's bad!

    April 30, 2012 at 10:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    As a motorcycle enthusiast I spend a lot of time on the road (free of distraction) and in my personal experience it is middle aged adults that seem to be talking and texting the most while driving. Minivan soccer mom I’m looking at YOU.

    April 30, 2012 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Melanie

    I am so sick of hearing about this!! So many people try to justify texting while driving, by using other scenarios. I've seen quite a few very near wrecks due to texting, and none of them were Teenagers. If you are that stupid, and get yourself killed – I don't care, just don't take a innocent person with you. You can call me cold or insensitive all you want, but why should I sympathize with a Moran.

    April 30, 2012 at 12:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Frank Watts

      What is a "moran"?

      June 7, 2012 at 01:36 | Report abuse |
  7. AmericanPeasant

    Easily solution: make cell phones illegal for kids under 18, your kid doesn't need a cell phone, and as studies like this show, giving kids a cell phone can be fatal. All they will use the phone for anyways is texting gossip, naked pics, drug deals, sneaking past the parents, and to look cool. The real practical uses of the cell phone will be lost on them, so don't even try.

    April 30, 2012 at 14:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hur Dur

      @AmericanPeasant, there are many things wrong with your statement including grammar. Seriously, you have no idea what you're talking about. Make cell phones illegal for anyone under 18? Plus, everything on your list is EXACTLY the same thing that adults use cell phones for (except, instead of sneaking past parents it's sneaking past other people). Adults are just as bad at abusing their cell phone as anyone under 18. If you don't believe me then you should go back to college, not only take a few classes to become more intelligent, but you will also see first hand everybody that plays with their phones that are indeed over 18, several that are past their 40's.

      Also, the "real practical use of a cell phone"? Don't make me laugh. If there was a "real practical use" of a cell phone, then the cell phone companies wouldn't have all of the apps and additions included on a cell phone. You also wouldn't see all of those 2 minute commercials that show what the new iphone or android can do, none of which shows a person talking on the phone. Welcome to the new era, you can leave your stone and chisel at home.

      May 1, 2012 at 11:16 | Report abuse |
  8. Oh the Irony

    @Melanie,

    When you call someone a "moron", try not to make two grammatical mistakes on just one word(the capitalization of the word, plus the incorrect spelling, in case you missed it).

    @AmericanPeasent,

    That might be an "easy" solution as you put it, but the amount of irrationality in your post makes me weep for humanity. I'm not even going to bother trying and explaining it to you but here is just a couple of things wrong with your rationale:
    1. What about the kids who can own a phone responsibly? Or the ones that have a job and don't need mom or dad to buy them a phone?
    2. What about the adult drivers who also text and drive? I hate when adults(I am 20) just assume all adolescents are idiots/bad people because they are young.

    I'm not even going to get into anything else you said but suffice to say just because a solution seems easy to you doesn't mean you can make laws as you please.

    April 30, 2012 at 20:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Doug Smith

    The cell phone continues to be the bane of society, simple solution, disable all phones that are in motion!

    April 30, 2012 at 22:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Bobby B

    What if it is an emergency, then what would happen, lives could be lost, is that a chance we are willing to take.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. miranda

    I think this is rediculous and the girlfriend is not responsible. The boyfriend was fully responsible for reading the text and the girl couldnt help if he replied or not. I think that if the girl is charged so should verizon because the phone company sent the messages. I dont think that she should take charge because the boyfriend could have easily said he would text her when he gets home, but instead he kept replying.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. keisha

    I think that this is a situation that needs to be debated before being determined. I definitely believe that the driver is responsible for texting & driving. The message sender is soemwhat responsible for knowing he was driving and still deciding to try and carry on a conversation, but i don't think charges should be pressed upon her. It was ultimately his decision to read the message while on the road.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Josh J

    Texting while driving or in the driver's seat should be illegal. This would solve problems for fatal crashing due to texting.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Vonquiqui

    I think they are both to blame, mmkkk. So sh knew that he was driving. Texting and driving should be illegal in all states! My .2 cp kkthx BAIII!

    May 24, 2012 at 09:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Nigel Thornberry

    TXTING WHILE DRIVIN IS BAD 4 U! BLARGGHHH

    May 24, 2012 at 09:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. NIGEL THRONBERRY II

    Texting while driving is really bad. i couldn't find where to comment on the girl getting sued for texting her boy friend while he was driving, but i feel she is not at fault.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Brittany

    Texting while drving is a big problem for any age, not just young adults. I have caught many adults in the car either on the phone or texting while driving with their heads down on the phone, or they only have one hand on the wheel. This scares me, especially when I'm driving because their required reaction time increases so if someone stops suddenly, the possibility of a collision increases. Cell phones should be off when in the car.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Billy

    they have no case against the girl. She broke no law by sending a text message. If i was listening to the radio and crashed i could sue the radio station for distracting me. this is what is being portrayed by this law suit. i will be outraged if this case goes through.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. NIGEL THRONBERRY 2

    ITS BAD

    May 24, 2012 at 09:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Anazyah

    i think texting while driving is wrong and stupid because first maybe people should wait until they get in the house or at least wait till you stop at the red light because teenagers get so focused on cell phones and not paying attention to the road.

    May 24, 2012 at 09:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Carly

    texting while driving is wrong and people in high school and is the age of 17 or 18 should not text while driving because if they want to drive they need to take real responsibilities and not text while driving

    May 24, 2012 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Anazyah

      I THINK U ARE RIGHT

      May 24, 2012 at 10:52 | Report abuse |
  22. faith

    i think that while driving texting is a stupid mistake. why let someone else get hurt because of your mistake. it is a hazard towards people that are obsessed with their cellular divice. just think before you injure your life or even someone elses.

    May 24, 2012 at 10:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    • alex

      U R RIGHT FAITH

      May 31, 2012 at 08:52 | Report abuse |
  23. Konner

    I think that texting is bad but what if your changing the song? What's next not listing to music?

    May 24, 2012 at 12:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Matthew

    I believe that it was the guys fault. The girl didn't break any law by sending a text messgae. It was the guys fault for choosing to look at his phone and respond back. He didn't have to do that. He is totally to blame and not the girl.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. colton

    its the drivers fault b/c even if he got the text he didnt have to text back

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Mike Hawk

    the girl isnt innocesbtr

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Heidi

    i feel like if the person knows that who their texting is driving they are resonsible but if they dont know then they shouldnt have a part. also i think that the cell phone company is responsible because they know where the person is with a gps and they know if they are texting or not.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Taylor

    I dont think the person who isnt in the car and sending the text is responsible at all , even if they knew the person was driving. The person in the car can either take it upon themselves to answer the text or to no answer the text.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. brian

    i think that they should not be able to sue the sender because the driver willfully picked up his phone and didnt have to do that.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. yes i did

    Carly
    texting while driving is wrong and people in high school and is the age of 17 or 18 should not text while driving because if they want to drive they need to take real responsibilities and not text while driving

    May 24, 2012 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    Anazyah
    I THINK U ARE RIGHT

    May 24, 2012 at 10:52 | Report abuse |
    faith
    i think that while driving texting is a stupid mistake. why let someone else get hurt because of your mistake. it is a hazard towards people that are obsessed with their cellular divice. just think before you injure your life or even someone elses.

    May 24, 2012 at 10:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    Konner
    I think that texting is bad but what if your changing the song? What's next not listing to music?

    May 24, 2012 at 12:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    Matthew
    I believe that it was the guys fault. The girl didn't break any law by sending a text messgae. It was the guys fault for choosing to look at his phone and respond back. He didn't have to do that. He is totally to blame and not the girl.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    colton
    its the drivers fault b/c even if he got the text he didnt have to text back

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    Mike Hawk
    the girl isnt innocesbtr

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    Heidi
    i feel like if the person knows that who their texting is driving they are resonsible but if they dont know then they shouldnt have a part. also i think that the cell phone company is responsible because they know where the person is with a gps and they know if they are texting or not.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply

    May 24, 2012 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. brad

    This is one of the stupidest cases of the year just because a girl sent a text.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Holly

    She shouldnt be held responsible because he never had to respond, but he chose too

    May 24, 2012 at 12:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Tim Smith

    The girl is not guilty at all, the guy didnt need to open it.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Well, here is the thing, it's not the ladies' fault for sending a text.. we all do it. Even if she did know, she doesn't control when he looks at the text.. It's his fault that he chose to look at the message while driving.

    Eric Hartman the First

    May 24, 2012 at 12:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Brad Leonard

    YOLO

    May 24, 2012 at 12:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. im the dude

    no no this shouldnt be a case against her he should be the one responsible

    May 24, 2012 at 12:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Calab Kinnard

    nobody like me!!!

    May 24, 2012 at 12:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Erich Harttman the Second

    Its not her fault he looked at the phone. She may have sent the message earlier and it didnt go through till then.

    May 24, 2012 at 12:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Oscar

    the woman should not be to blame because she has no control over when the man opens the message, therefor the conclusion to my hypothesis is its that man who opened the message is responsible...............................................................................................................................................................thank you

    May 24, 2012 at 12:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Raquel M.

    I think the girl isn't guilty at all since the guy driving didn't HAVE to answer the text. THE DUDE IS RESPONSIBLE!

    May 24, 2012 at 12:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Oscar Scott

    My birthday is christmas :)

    May 24, 2012 at 12:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. David

    I believe AT&T has had "don't text while driving" or something like that sticker on all their phones, but it's not like it's doing any good I supposed. There are researches out there that will install devices in the car so that the driver's seat cannot receive any signal. That's not as easy to do though considering the new technology and the number of cars we have.
    That being said, I don't see how texting while driving is cellphone makers's or providers' responsibility. It's nearly impossible to prevent that from the maker's stand point in my opinion. I saw somewhere in the comments that the provider can know when you're texting and driving because gps or whatever, that's what the public call privacy invasion and we've seen a lot of scandals and sues about this so that's not even possible. Plus, not every phone has gps, and I would really like to see whoever said that invent a phone that will send a signal to the provider the minute someone starts typing a text and the phone is in motion (oh, now we're getting into the discussion of whether the texter is driving or just in the car) have fun!
    All in all, it's just the responsibility of the drivers because in general it's not just texting and driving, it's anything that distract the driver (including changing music, eating, drinking, grabbing that napkin from the back seat, etc)

    June 6, 2012 at 20:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Massachusetts Court Observer

    No doubt many of you saw the verdict in the massachusetts texting case. A high schooler age 17 had his life ruined in a split second when he caused a fatal accident while texting --- one person dead; another injured for life; and the 17 year old: he is going to jail for a minimum 1 year - his license is suspended for 15 years; he has a felony conviction on his record for life; and he and his family will be driven to near bankruptcy with the multi million dollar lawsuit they will face. All this casued by a few seconds of distraction while texting ---it is time for the federal ogvernmetn and/or all states to implement a law banning texting while driving and banning cell phones while driving

    Every parent of every teenager should review this case with their kids. Every school ought to have a school wide meeting to review this case and its consequnces for all.

    texting hiole driving will become more dangerous and deadly than DUI

    June 7, 2012 at 08:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Ian Anderson

    We have gotten so obsessed in today's world with the new phone technology that as humans with a sense and purpose it seems so hard to put the gadget away. Driving is a full time responsibility and that we seem to have forgotten. Be responsible and thoughtful do not text and drive!

    August 16, 2012 at 13:23 | Report abuse | Reply

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