Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 8:28 EDT

Online Auto Insurance: Survey Highlights Dangers of Distracted Driving

October 5, 2011

NEWARK, N.J., Oct. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — A new survey that shows American drivers know talking or texting while driving is dangerous–even though more than one-third of them do it anyway–underscores dangers posed by distracted driving, according to Online Auto Insurance.

Traffic crashes caused by distracted motorists claim tens of thousands of lives and cost billions of dollars in property losses each year. And even those less-disastrous accidents involving cell phones and other distractions can make it hard for at-fault drivers to find cheap auto insurance coverage.

But according to a new AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety survey, motorists continue to drive distracted, despite knowing the risks involved. The survey found that 95 percent of drivers know texting or emailing while driving seriously threatens their safety, but 35 percent admit they do it anyway.

Authorities have warned consumers for years about the dangers of distracted driving, which can include using a phone or other mobile device while driving, as well as applying makeup, eating or drinking, changing radio stations or chatting with passengers.

But as mobile devices, PDAs, laptops and other potential hazards have become increasingly engrained in consumers’ daily lives, distracted driving has increased–and so has its toll.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported that 20 percent of all injury crashes in 2009 involved distracted driving. The federal agency says nearly 5,500 people died that year in vehicle crashes involving driver distraction, with those victims accounting for 16 percent of all roadway fatalities.

And the numbers have worsened in the past few years, according to federal safety officials. About 10 percent of traffic fatalities in 2005 resulted from crashes involving distracted driving. That proportion had risen to 16 percent by 2009.

Source: http://www.distraction.gov/stats-and-facts/index.html

States have passed a range of laws to lessen to damage done by various forms of distracted driving, however. Talking on a handheld while driving is banned in 10 states and the District of Columbia, and texting is banned for all drivers by 34 states and the nation’s capital, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III).

To learn more about this and other insurance and safety issues, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/cheap/ where they will find informative resource pages and a rate-comparison generator that can help quickly evaluate their coverage options.

SOURCE Online Auto Insurance, LLC

Source: PR Newswire