distracted driving

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Sending or reading a text, eating food, searching for a station on your car radio or a song on your iPod – these can all draw your attention away from the road while you're driving. Distracted driving is a deadly behavior that leads to about 5,000 deaths every year, about 16 percent of all fatal car crashes, according to federal estimates. Teenage drivers are the most affected by this, being distracted about a quarter of the time while behind the wheel.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 16-year-old drivers are five times more likely to get into an accident than 18-year-olds. But studies show graduated driver’s license laws dramatically reduce the number of teen driver crashes. 

Hands-free is not risk free. That's the message from AAA.

The auto club is releasing what it calls a groundbreaking study on distracted driving. AAA along with the University of Utah found voice-activated, hands-free technologies on cell phones and in cars pose the greatest risks for distracted driving accidents.

“The risk is extensive,” says AAA spokesperson Cheryl Parker. “If you have these voice activated, in-car technologies, don’t use them unless you’re safely parked.”