Distracted drivers think they have a handle on it

| 5/28/2008

According to an insurance company survey, 98 percent of Americans consider themselves safe drivers – even though nearly three-fourths admit they’ve driven while busy with a cell phone call or other distraction.

Almost 80 percent of the drivers surveyed have been in a vehicle with distracted drivers, and more than 40 percent have been hit or almost hit by another driver who was talking on a cell phone while driving.

Nearly half of all the teenagers and Generation Y respondents surveyed said that staying connected socially was a reason for driving distracted. And 90 percent of the respondents said driving distractions will only increase in the future.

“The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration estimates that 115 people are killed in auto accidents each day in the U.S. With distractions being such a large cause of accidents, it’s clear that (driving while distracted) is an issue in our society that needs to be curbed now,” said John Ulczycki, executive director of NHTSA.

The Nationwide Insurance Company surveyed 1,500 drivers between the ages of 16 and 61 who were contacted by phone.