Mobile
Commentary
10/1/2009
11:12 AM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
Commentary
50%
50%

Public 'Concerned' About Texting & Driving, Except When It Applies To Them

The headlines about the dangers of texting while driving have been hard to miss this week. Statistics indicate that nearly 6,000 Americans were killed by distracted drivers last year. A new study shows that nearly 90% of Americans are concerned about the dangers of using mobile phones while driving...but it doesn't appear to be stopping them from doing it.

The headlines about the dangers of texting while driving have been hard to miss this week. Statistics indicate that nearly 6,000 Americans were killed by distracted drivers last year. A new study shows that nearly 90% of Americans are concerned about the dangers of using mobile phones while driving...but it doesn't appear to be stopping them from doing it.I see people using their phones while driving every single day. I am sure most of you do, too. It's one thing for a person to be driving with a phone held to their head for a phone call. That's dangerous enough. But seeing users with their eyes locked on their mobile device rather than the road is starting to make me angry. It should make you angry, too, as that type of behavior puts others at risk.

It's no surprise, then, that 88% of Americans who were recently surveyed said that they are "concerned" about cell phone use and texting while driving. One-third of respondents said that they are "very concerned" about the issue.

Bob Kenney, Context Marketing principal, said, "This finding is especially notable because the survey asked respondents to differentiate between social issues that generally concern them and those issues that concern them a great deal. The results show that the issue of distracted driving has really captured the attention of Americans today."

A number of automakers have expressed their concern about the dangers of texting while driving, as have industry lobbies such as the CTIA. AT&T and Verizon Wireless also recently launched educational initiatives to make sure cell phone users understand the risks of this behavior. So far, none of this has affected what I see on the road every day.

Personally, I have completely stopped using my mobile phone when driving. I wear a Bluetooth headset if I am expecting calls, but most of the time I just ignore my device until I am parked somewhere.

If your business has employees who are often behind the wheel of a moving vehicle, consider placing strict no-usage policies if you don't already have them established. The New York Times recently highlighted an example whereby a victim's family sued the employer of a multi-tasking driver for tens of millions of dollars. Why put your organization -- and employees -- at such risk?

Ban texting and talking on mobile phones while your employees are driving.

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