In March 2015, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a comprehensive research study into the causes of teen crashes. The research results indicate distracted driving is much more serious than we all thought.

Researchers analyzed 1,700 videos taken from in-vehicle event recorders. Specifically, researchers studied the six seconds leading up to the accident. Researchers concluded 6 out of 10 moderate-to-severe teen crashes were due to distraction.txting while driving

Distraction was a factor in:

  • 58% of all crashes studied
  • 76% of rear-end crashes studied
  • 89% of road-departure crashes studied

Survey results indicate these are the most common distractions:

  • Interacting with passengers: 15% of crashes
  • Cellphone use: 12% of crashes
  • Looking at something in the vehicle: 9% of crashes
  • Singing/Dancing: 8% of crashes
  • Grooming: 6% of crashes
  • Reaching for something in the car: 6% of crashes

The study also revealed that drivers using their cell phones had their eyes off the road for an average 4.1 out of the final 6 seconds leading up to the accident. Also, more than 50% of the time before a rear-end impact, the distracted teen drivers failed to react before the impact, meaning the crash occurred without braking.

In 2013, teens were involved in 963,000 crashes, resulting in 383,000 injuries and 2,865 deaths.

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