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Study: Drivers Commonly Tweet, Facebook, Video Chat While Driving

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Cell Phone in Car

It goes without saying, but hey, it’s important enough that it also bears repeating: texting and driving is an incredibly nonsensical thing to do. This sentiment is encapsulated pretty perfectly in the opening line of a recent New York Times column regarding the prevalence texting and using social media behind the wheel:  “Phones are getting smarter, drivers seemingly less so.”

This exceptional one-liner refers to the results of a study conducted by AT&T, which found that almost 20% of smartphone users are using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram while driving. Further, about 70% of all drivers use their smartphone in some way while driving, be it emailing or texting or searching the Internet.

The results are pretty telling: about 27% of those polled by AT&T (all drivers between the ages of 16 and 65) admit to using Facebook in some form while driving, and about one out of every seven drivers admits to tweeting or checking their feed on Twitter.

The most prevalent activities are texting (61% of respondents), emailing (33%), and surfing (28%). Inexplicably 17% of all drivers polled have taken selfies while operating a moving vehicle. 10% said they have video chatted while driving. Stop and think about that for a moment.

Sure, it should go without saying, and it definitely bears repeating again: texting and emailing and Facebooking and tweeting and selfie-ing and video chatting and driving is an incredibly nonsensical thing to do. Here’s a thought for the next time you get behind the wheel: focus on the driving part.

News Sources: AT&T, NYT