Most New Hampshire drivers know that using the phone or texting while behind the wheel is dangerous. Many severe car accidents and even fatalities have been linked to distracted driving, and widespread public awareness campaigns have drawn attention to the issue. In many states and municipalities, law enforcement agencies have stepped up ticketing and penalties for drivers found texting. However, large numbers of Americans continue to use their smartphones while driving, even when they know it is dangerous behavior. According to Liberty Mutual Insurance’s Multi-National Distracted Driving Study, people across all age groups commonly use their smartphones behind the wheel even while regarding themselves as safe drivers.
Almost all respondents, 98%, said that they considered themselves to be safe drivers. At the same time, 67% of American drivers said that they had used their smartphones to text, check email, surf the internet or use apps while driving. A full 47% said that they regularly engaged in these types of distracted driving behaviors, and 38% said that they regularly engaged in speeding. Researchers said that drivers in a hurry or running late were some of the biggest concerns they found in the results. These drivers were more likely to speed and engage in distracted behaviors, both posing a risk.
While the study found generational differences in distracted driving, people of all generations were likely to use their phones behind the wheel. Millennials had the highest rate of mobile phone usage with 86% saying they used their phones while driving, 79% saying they took calls and read texts and 53% saying they sent emails and texts.
Distracted driving is the cause of many severe accidents involving injuries and fatalities. People who have been injured in a collision due to someone else’s negligence may work with a personal injury lawyer to pursue compensation for their damages.