Texting and Driving: Always the Wrong Choice

September 4, 2012 was the first and last day of Deianerah Logan’s senior year of high school.

The blonde, pretty, and popular 17-year-old was driving to school in a suburb of Minneapolis when she started texting a friend. Distracted, she crashed into the back of a school bus as two children were exiting it. Logan died and the two children were injured.

Logan’s story is all too common in the United States. Every day, an average of nine people die in car accidents related to distracted driving. In 2012, more than 3,300 people lost their lives and more than 421,000 were injured.

Many drivers use their cell phones while operating their vehicle to answer phone calls, listen to music, and text. If the statistics above aren’t enough to scare you, the infographic below that highlights the following five more reasons not to text and drive should convince you.

distracted driving infographic

Consider Other Motorists and Your Passengers

Reading a text or email is one of the most dangerous things you can do while driving because it forces you to take both eyes off of the road, your hands off of the steering wheel, and your brain off of the task of driving. In fact, a recent study by Car and Driver magazine shows that using a cell phone to text or read emails can delay your reaction time as much or even more than driving under the influence of alcohol.

If you are transporting other people in your car, you have a tremendous responsibility to keep them safe. If you are texting and driving, you are putting your passengers and other motorists at risk of serious injury and death. That text to say “ok” can definitely wait.

It’s (Probably) Against the Law

Not only is texting and driving extremely dangerous, it’s also likely illegal. As deaths from distracted driving rise, most states are developing laws making it illegal to text and drive. If you are caught by a police officer you could be fined up to a couple hundred dollars.

Your Insurance Rates Could Go Up

Your insurance company will not be excited if you get a ticket for texting and driving. If you think your rates are high, wait and see what happens after your citation! If you are involved in an accident where you were distracted and you’re held responsible, your rates will go up even more. In some serious cases, your insurance company may even drop you completely.

Hands-free Technology is Easy to Use

If you really feel like it’s important to use your phone while driving, there are options. Hands-free technology allows you to connect your cell phone to your car’s stereo system. If you have an older call, you can also get a phone with Bluetooth technology.