Distracted Driving Car Accidents in Massachusetts, Not Just a Teen Problem

Teen girl drivers are most likely to be involved in a distraction-related car accident in Brockton and elsewhere, according to a recent study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

These young female drivers are actually twice as likely to engage in activities behind the wheel involving cell phones and text messaging devices than males the same age. Male or female, teenage drivers are the most likely to engage in these distractions. It’s no wonder why they have such high accident rates.
Researchers concluded that talking on the phone and text messaging was the most common behavior that teenage drivers exhibited behind the wheel. Some of the other top distractions included talking loudly with passengers, engaging in horseplay, drinking, eating, grooming and playing with controls, according to CBS NEWS.

Our Massachusetts car accident lawyers know these findings failed to surprise as car accidents continue to be the leading cause of death for teens in the country. Researchers were looking more at which drivers were likely to engage in specific distractions. In the state of Massachusetts, these young drivers aren’t even allowed to talk on cell phones or text message at the wheel.

According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using a hand-held cell phone at the wheel. All drivers are prohibited from text messaging while driving. Still, young drivers are playing with these devices all too often behind the wheel, and they’re endangering the safety of our roadways.

“This new study provides the best view we’ve had about how and when teens engage in distracted driving behaviors,” said Peter Kissinger, AAA Foundation President and CEO.

When state law fails, parents are asked to step in. Parental advice, insight and enforcement may be some of the best ways to help to reduce their risks for a car accident.

This study from AAA comes as we enter National Distracted Driving Month 2012. This month-long campaign is used to help raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. The National Safety Council (NSC) is urging motorists across the country to take the pledge, the pledge to drive distraction free. You see, these kinds of accidents are completely preventable. This pledge isn’t only for teens, who are more likely to engage in these distractions, but for drivers of all ages. The change starts with you. Take a pledge, be a responsible driver and help to save lives.

According to the NSC, about a quarter of all car accidents involve a cell phone-using driver. As a matter of fact, engaging in phone conversations behind the wheel causes the driver to only see 50 percent of the surroundings. That means 50 percent of traffic lights, other vehicles and pedestrians aren’t seen by the driver. Scary, isn’t it?

Do you part to make our roadways safer for everyone, take the pledge and urge the young drivers in your family to drive distraction free. You’re urged to use the month of April to help spread the message of the dangers of these unsafe driving habits. It can help to save your life!

If you or the teen driver in your family has been injured in a car accident in Massachusetts, contact Boston Injury Lawyer Jeffrey S. Glassman. Our law firm offers free and confidential appointments to discuss the rights of accident victims and the families of these victims. Call 877-617-5333.

Additional Resources:

Electronics top distractions for teen drivers, by David Morgan, CBS NEWS
More Blog Entries:

Thinking: A Common Cause of Car Accidents in Massachusetts and Elsewhere, Boston Personal Injury Attorney Blog, March 21, 2012

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