Teens drive distracted more often compared to other drivers

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Teens drive distracted more often compared to other drivers

IMAGE / Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

IMAGE / Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

IMAGE / Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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Texting or engaging on a phone while driving is one of the leading causes of vehicular accidents, especially among teens.

Government statistics say that 68 percent of Michigan teens have admitted to texting while driving, opposed to 48 percent of all drivers.

Senior Erin Davis said distracted driving is not worth the risk of taking your life or someone else’s.

“I have noticed that a large percentage of people participate in distracted driving,” Davis said. “It’s incredibly dangerous and takes thousands of lives each year.”

The definition of distracted driving is not limited to texting. The term distracted driving includes driving under the influence, tailgating, and failure to obey traffic lights, stop signs, and speed limits.

It’s (distracted driving) incredibly dangerous and takes thousands of lives each year.”

— Erin Davis, senior

Recklessness is a dangerous behavior that should not correspond with driving, but in many cases, it does.

In 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported Michigan as having 3,179 people being killed in crashes involving distracted driving.

Davis said she wouldn’t purposely put herself in a dangerous situation while driving.

“The only time I ever get on my phone while driving is when I am completely stopped for a long period of time,” Davis said. “I would never want to put my life, the lives of my passengers, or nary other drivers’ life in danger.

Michigan law has made texting while driving illegal as of July 2010. The cost of a first-offense fine is $100, not including costs from car damage or injuries.

For Davis, however, the financial costs should not be part of a driver’s consciousness because the real cost is a human life.

“Texting and driving is an ignorant mistake,” she said. “You’re knowingly taking your eyes off the wheel for a short text that can always wait. Nothing is worth more than your — or someone else’s — life.”

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