We all know that texting while you drive is dangerous, but that is not the only smartphone activity that is now risking people’s lives on the road. Taking selfies or videos while driving is now becoming more common and is increasingly distracting drivers.
In fact, research by AT&T found that 17 percent of drivers have indeed been guilty of taking selfies while driving. Men are the biggest offenders. What’s scary is that this new activity is gaining more popularity as young drivers share videos and photos of themselves while behind the wheel.
Dangers of Taking Selfies While Driving
The danger of this ‘selfie’ activity while driving is not the only problem out there. You can now see thousands of these selfies and videos being posted on social media sites under the tag #drivingselfie which basically encourages others to do the same. The Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) interviewed 500 drivers regarding their smartphone use while in their vehicles. Among those who were surveyed, nine percent did in fact admit to taking selfies last month while they were behind the wheel.
IAM’s Mark Lewis told Sky News that this activity is actually more dangerous than getting behind the wheel drunk and effects your driving in the same manner.
You will find millions of driving videos and photos on social media sites like Instagram and Twitter, especially under hashtags like #drivingtowork, #drivingfast, #drivingintherain and #drivingselfie which clearly shows some serious and dangerous distracted driving behaviors. You even see that the car is moving and a visible speedometer in some photos.
According to AAA, while you are snapping that 2 second photo, your car has just traveled 176 feet driving 60 mph. This is how long half a football field is. Videos are worse. While you are recording that 6 second video, you have just driven the length of one and a half football fields (528 feet) at 60 mph.
Even though people are aware of how dangerous distracted driving is, based on statistics, they still do it. Sadly, around 660,000 drivers manipulate electronic devices or use their cell phones while they drive, states the 2011 report from the National Occupant Protection Use Survey and also in the same year, out of all the distracted-related car accident deaths, there were 385 deaths due to a driver using a cell phone.
These are some disturbing statistics which shows you how dangerous distracted driving really is as well as how important it is to have personal auto insurance because of accidents.