October 14, 2013
The Perils Of Texting While Driving
US research reveals that 4 out of 5 college student drivers have used their cell phones to send or receive text messages while driving despite the majority recognizing that the activity represents a risk. Garold Lantz and Sandra Loeb of the McGowan School of Business, at King's College, in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, found that male drivers are more likely to engage in texting while driving but consider themselves more proficient drivers than others and so less likely to endanger themselves or others while doing so.
Analysis indicates 'texting impulsiveness' is positively associated with people who text frequently and those who text while driving, the team reports in the International Journal of Sustainable Strategic Management this month.
"There seems to be a mentality that use of electronic devices is dangerous for everyone but 'me'," the team says. While the US government has introduced a public awareness campaign based around the "distraction.gov" web site, the means to correct for such a risky practice as texting while driving is in dispute. The team's study provides useful empirical evidence regarding attitudes to this issue.
"If further research conclusively demonstrates that texting while driving is as dangerous as driving drunk this study suggests that a promotional campaign should be undertaken to assure that this point is clearly understood," the team suggests. Lantz points out that, "Our study, particularly our measurement of impulsiveness, is exploratory. We have been working to develop that measurement and it is still a work in progress," he says.
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