The National Safety Council is calling on motorists to stop using cell phones and messaging devices while driving, and is urging governors and legislators in all 50 states and the District of Columbia to ban the behavior.
The two biggest distractions on the road today: talking on cell phones and text messaging. People know that such mobile multi-tasking is dangerous, yet people do it anyway, choosing to disregard common sense, the scientific record and the rising human toll.
A lot of research studies have demonstrated that a hands-free phone poses no less danger than a hand-held one. The problem is not your hands but your brain.
Laboratory experiments using simulators, real-world road studies and accident statistics all tell the same story: drivers talking on a cell phone are four times as likely to have an accident as drivers who are not. That’s the same level of risk posed by a driver who is legally drunk.
Cell phone use while driving contributes to 6 percent of crashes, which equates to 636,000 crashes, 330,000 injuries, 12,000 serious injuries and 2,600 deaths in the U.S. each year.
Put the phone down!