Teens texting while driving gives way to using apps behind the wheel

Teens texting while driving gives way to using apps behind the wheel
We just can't catch a break battling the Attention Deficit Disorder that seems to plague everyone with a phone these days. First it was the incessant chatting while driving, then we moved to texting, now it turns out that 35% of college students surveyed use apps while driving.

While this shouldn't come as a shocker, the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) student Lauren McCarthy, who did the survey, says something very troubling:

The participants seemed to understand that using mobile apps while driving is dangerous, and some have even experienced motor vehicle crashes while using mobile apps, but they continue to do it.” As a Department of Psychology student, she adds: "something needs to be done because in psychological terms, Internet use involves substantial cognitive and visual distraction that exceeds talking or texting, making it much more dangerous.

The Director of the UAB Youth Safety Labs also chimes in with a similar remark: “Driving a car is an incredibly complex task for humans to complete safely. There are enormous cognitive, perceptual and motor tasks an automobile driver must complete, frequently very quickly and with split-second precision. A driver using his or her smartphone is clearly distracted, both visually and cognitively, and really should not be driving. The fact that 10 percent of college students with smartphones ‘often’ are using them while driving is astounding — the fact that 35 percent ‘sometimes’ do is equally concerning.

It's a fact that 33 states ban texting while driving, but nobody has institutionalized a ban on using apps and mobile Internet behind the wheel with the respective penalties or fines. Not yet, at least. Lauren McCarthy is presenting her findings before the 119th APA convention in Washington, D.C., and it might pick the attention of the authorities enough to consider using apps while driving a safety hazard.

source: UABNews via Textually



1. hepresearch unregistered

This is why the government has to keep on making stupid laws... because too many people choose to do stupid things. I don't feel the need for the government to take care of me, but some people, well, apparently need the government to tell them everything that they "can" and "cannot" do.

2. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

I know what you mean. Most people have common sense & the will for life preservation. Some people just don't. I know it's tragic when someone dies because they are texting or using an app, but it is what it is. If your life is not important enough to not text, use an app, drink & drive, or whatever then I don't feel bad if YOU die. I will feel bad for those kids who don't have a Mom or Dad, or the parents who lost their kid & vice versa. Also just yesterday there was an article about a Greyhound Bus driver who was filmed using his phone while driving a bus full of people. It's getting to be an epidemic & that type of disregard is completely unacceptable. So in a way the government needs to make laws NOT to protect the texter or app user, but to protect the innocent people that may die when texter accidentally runs over a kid on a side walk or when a parent driving his car kills his whole family because he or she needed to text or use an app. It’s sad but true!

7. AndroidTroll

Posts: 359; Member since: Mar 05, 2011

Well said. I completely agree. Lol so true no will for life preservation. Either that or they lack a grasp of reality and fundamental laws of physics which keeps them from thinking "Maybe I should focus on controlling this massive hunk of steel travelling at speeds in excess of 40 mph before I worry about controlling my phone."

3. jshurak unregistered


4. josh unregistered

This is called natural selection! Let nature take its course. Plus its only only Teens.

5. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Yes it is natural selection, I agree. What if this person texting or using an app runs you over while you are walking with your mom down a sidewalk? Yes it's natural selection, but if it fair to you, your mother & the rest of your family who has to live with that for the rest of their lives? So you see it's NOT that easy!

6. SPcamert

Posts: 56; Member since: Feb 06, 2010

I wonder if the "apps" that people were thinking of when they answered yes to this included things like Google Maps Navigation which is actually a passive program that will assist in the long run with keeping people who are lost from causing more accidents because they took a wrong turn? I'm not saying it's a bad idea to not use apps while driving but I'd like to see the actual survey to gauge whether the wording was as accurate as possible or not.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.
FCC OKs Cingular's purchase of AT&T Wireless