Risky Behavior Goes Beyond Cell-Phone Use in Car, Study Says


  • AAA Driving Study Picture

    AAA Driving Study Picture

    Drivers who use cell phones also engage in other risky behavior behind the wheel, a new study found. | January 25, 2013

Just the Facts:
  • Drivers who use cell phones also engage in other risky behaviors behind the wheel, including speeding and driving while drowsy, according to a new AAA report.
  • Drivers that reported never using a cell phone were much less likely to report additional risky behaviors, the study said.
  • Cell-phone users are "likely to engage in a wide range of dangerous driving activities," according to AAA.

WASHINGTON — Drivers who use cell phones also engage in other risky behaviors behind the wheel, including speeding and driving while drowsy, according to a new AAA report released on Friday.

Drivers that reported never using a cell phone were much less likely to report additional risky behaviors, the study said.

Cell-phone users are "likely to engage in a wide range of dangerous driving activities," according to the survey conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

The research shows that 65 percent of drivers who use cell phones also reported speeding; 44 percent also reported driving while drowsy; 53 percent also reported sending a text or email; and 29 percent also drove without a seatbelt.

"What concerns AAA is this pattern of risky behavior that even goes beyond cell phone use," said Kathleen Bower, AAA vice president of public affairs, in a statement. "These same cell phone-using drivers clearly understand the risk of distraction, yet are still likely to engage in a wide range of dangerous driving activities."

AAA says driver use of cell phones impairs reaction times and roughly quadruples crash risk.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that more than 3,000 people are killed and nearly half a million are injured each year in crashes involving driver distraction.

Edmunds says: Some serious work needs to be done to educate drivers about the risks linked to using a cell phone — and other bad behavior — while driving.

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