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Study of U.S. adults on the Distracted Driving Survey

Link to study

Texting and other mobile phones related to distracted driving is estimated to account for tens of thousands of automobile collisions annually. Still, studies examining the particular mobile phone reading and writing activities of drivers are restricted. The objective of the research was to elucidate the frequency of cell-phone related to distracted driving behaviors. A nationwide, representative, anonymous panel of 1211 United States drivers had been recruited in 2015 to finish the Distracted Driving Survey (DDS), an 11-item validated questionnaire examining mobile phone reading and writing tasks and at what rates they occur.

Greater DDS scores reflect more diversion. Demographic data and self-reported crash speed examined DDS scores. Nearly 60 percent of respondents reported that a mobile phone reading or writing activity over the previous 30 days, together with reading texts (48 percent ), composing texts (33 percent ), and seeing maps (43%) most often reported. The only 4.9percent of respondents had registered in a program aimed at reducing cell phone-related driving. DDS scores were significantly correlated to collision speed (p < 0.0001), with each 1 point increase related to an additional 7 percent risk of a crash (p < 0.0001). DDS scores were inversely correlated to age (p < 0.0001). The DDS demonstrated high internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha = 0.94).

High rates of mobile phone-related diversion are reported here in a nationwide sample. Distraction is associated with collision rates and occurs across all age groups but is most significant in younger drivers. The DDS can be used to assess the effects of public health programs aimed at reducing cell-phone related distracted driving.

Cell phone reading and writing activities are shared in the general U.S. population and vary by activity. Together with writing and reading text messages and the use of GPS is the most frequent. < 5% of respondents engage in any program, like a mobile phone program or pledge, to reduce or restrict texting and to drive. Greater DDS scores, indicating higher cell-phone-related distraction rates, are significantly correlated to more excellent self-reported crash rates and are inversely related to age. The DDS can be utilized to evaluate individual risk and the impact of public health programs aimed at reducing texting and other cell-phones about distracted driving.