Overconfidence can be deadly for drivers who engage in distracting tasks behind the wheel. A recent study by AAA found that experienced drivers were more likely than novices to eat, use their cellphones and engage in other distracting activities while driving.
Teenagers Text Less Than Adults
Many people assume teenagers are most often at fault in texting-and-driving accidents. After all, teens are big users of social media and frequent texters. However, novice drivers are actually less likely to admit to texting while driving than adults.
In a recent survey conducted by AAA, 29% of teens admitted to regularly using their phones while driving, compared with 48% of adults. It is possible that teenagers avoid using their cellphones because they lack confidence behind the wheel. In addition, many drivers’ education programs cover the dangers of texting and driving, and many states have laws banning cellphone use by novice drivers.
The dangers of texting and driving are well known but too often ignored. Those who use cellphones while driving are four times more likely to crash and those who text while driving are 23 times more likely to crash.
In addition, adults are more likely to participate in other distracting behavior behind the wheel, such as eating, grooming, talking to passengers and taking care of children. All of these activities significantly increase the risk of crashes.
Many adults lead busy lives. There might not be enough hours in the day to run erands, work, and return phone calls. And adult drivers may feel confident that they have the driving skills to engage in multiple tasks behind the wheel.
The problem is that driving errors are often deadly. In 2012, 3,328 people died in distracted driving accidents and 421,000 were injured. Many of those who caused these accidents overestimated their driving abilities to the detriment of others.
Distracted driving is a danger to everyone on the road. Adults who are overconfident in their driving abilities may take risks that can potentially cause serious accidents. This is why it is important that all drivers stay focused and avoid distractions, regardless of age.