State Farm Poll Finds Teens Think Texting While Driving is not a Big Deal

The result of a recent survey is startling – teens do not see texting while driving as a big deal.

State Farm Insurance surveyed 697 teens nationwide. It finds that many teen drivers, inexperienced behind the wheel, do not think texting while driving is as dangerous as drinking and driving. The survey finds just over half of teen drivers, ages 14 through 17, strongly agree they could be killed if driving under the influence. Only 36 percent believe that can happen if they text while driving.

We’ve reported these statistics previously:

  • Car crashes are the leading cause of death for teen drivers both in Florida and across the country. In 2007, 306 teenagers died in Florida distracted driving car crashes.
  • Teens face the greatest risk of being in an auto accident during their first year of driving. About 20 percent – one in five teens will be in a car crash.
  • Teens are not experienced behind the wheel. Their brains are still in the developmental stage.

Studies show that distractions of any kind, from arguing to texting, changing the radio, eating, and reaching for something in the back seat, increases distracted driving and increases auto accidents.

According to the Florida Times Union, Lt. Bill Leeper of the FHP says he goes out and talks to schools about the dangers of texting and driving. He says when he talks about texting, “They’re looking at each other and grinning like, ‘I do that.'” He says drinking and driving is not as common as texting while driving.

However, overall crashes involving teens have been on the decline for three years.

While teens don’t think texting while driving is as big a deal as drinking and driving, our state legislators don’t either. This year our lawmakers again failed to vote to create any laws against texting or cell phone use by teens or any other drivers while driving.

Florida car crash attorneys are available to answer any questions that auto accident injury victims may have regarding distracted driving.