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Poll shows text-messaging has doubled over the past 18 months, even though more drivers who text believe it is unsafe

Post by News Tribune Staff on Aug. 25, 2009 at 2:07 pm with No Comments »
August 25, 2009 2:07 pm

This comes to us courtesy of our friends in public relations. PEMCO Insurance did a poll in June of this year that found that text-messaging is on the rise.

It’s like Prohibition: There’s nothing like a ban to make something really popular — or so it seems.

Washington made texting while driving a secondary offenses, which means drivers have to be caught doing something else wrong before they’ll ever get a ticket for text messaging. (I suspect the odds of dying while text-message are greater than the likelihood of getting a ticket.)

The PEMCO poll showed 70 percent of drivers think text-messaging should be a primary offense. On the other hand, only 58 percent think talking on a cell phone while holding it in your hand should be a primary offense. (That also is a secondary offense today.)

Two years ago, 65 percent of people thought talking on a cell phone should be a primary offense. What does that tell you? To me, it says a lot of people are thinking about the tickets they COULD HAVE GOTTEN if it already were a primary offense. Hence, the greater degree of acceptance. But that’s just me.

Texting-While-Driving Doubles in 18 Months Among Washington Drivers

SEATTLE, Aug. 25 /PRNewswire/ < A poll by PEMCO Insurance reveals that the practice of reading and sending text messages while driving has more than doubled in the past 18 months, even while an increasing number of drivers believe the activity is unsafe.

The poll, taken in June 2009 shows that 18 percent of Washington drivers who use electronic devices admit to reading or sending text messages while driving, although University of Utah research suggests such behavior increases the likelihood of accidents eight-fold. Only six percent of respondents using electronic devices admitted to texting behind the wheel in February 2008.


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