Smart Phones Distract Drivers According to GMAC Study

July 20, 2011

While 8 in 10 drivers say it is never safe to text, email or use a smart phone, a large percentage use various features on their smart phones when operating their vehicles, according to the latest GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test.

Even with a number of states banning handheld cell phones and texting, nearly 50 percent of drivers admit to making phone calls while driving and about 15 percent of drivers admit to sending and reading text messages while driving.

Almost three quarters of 16 to 17 year olds saying that they’ve completely stopped the use of mobile devices while driving. The vast majority of drivers between the ages of 60 and 65 have completely stopped using mobile devices as well.

Other findings include:

  • While stopped at a red light, almost two-thirds of drivers admitted to making phone calls and 8 in 10 drivers admitted to sending and checking for text messages.
  • Fifty percent of drivers say they make phone calls while driving in slow traffic or while driving on the open highway.
  • Ten percent of drivers admitted to sending and reading emails or using their downloaded applications on their smart phones while operating their vehicles.
  • About three percent of drivers use their smart phones to take pictures and some even update their Twitter and Facebook pages while on the road.
  • Less than one percent of all drivers say they received a ticket or a warning for using a mobile device or a smart phone in the past year.
  • 8 in 10 drivers reported never being distracted or even coming close to having an accident as a result of using their mobile device while driving.
  • Fifty percent of drivers say they have completely eliminated all smart phone activities while driving.

Source: GMAC Insurance

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