Half of all adults and teenagers have reported to have ridden in a car while the driver was texting, according to the Huffington Post. While the number of drunk driving fatalities has continued to decline as of 2014, the danger of distracted driving continues to rise.
Distracted driving is considered any activity that distracts a person's attention away from the primary task of driving, such as texting, reading maps, grooming or adjusting the radio or CD player, states the U.S. Department of Transportation. Texting while driving is considered the most dangerous form of distracted driving because it requires visual, manual and cognitive attention from the driver. Engaging in visual-manual subtasks, such as texting while driving, increases the risk of getting into an accident by three times.The average time the eyes of a driver are off the road while texting is five seconds, which going at 55 mph is equivalent to covering the distance of a football field with a blindfolded driver. One in four teens respond to a text at least once while driving, and 20 percent of teens and 10 percent of parents report that they have extended text conversations while driving.
As of 2014, 43 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws prohibiting texting while driving, reports the Huffington Post. Connecticut was the first state to pass such a law in 2006.