St. Louis has more distracted drivers than just about anywhere in the United States. In fact, only two metropolitan areas are home to more than the Gateway to the West.
Distracted driving remains a major cause of fatal car crashes. In its most recent report on distracted driving (Distracted Driving 2018), the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in April stated that 2,841 people died in distracted-affected crashes.
In another study, conducted in January, an automobile insurance internet portal called The Zebra provides a further look at distracted drivers. The company surveyed 2,600 drivers in 25 major U.S. cities. They asked them how often, in a 30-minute drive, do they:
· Send text messages while driving
· Read cell phone notifications while driving
· Adjust the radio while driving
· Check social media while driving
The options included an additional array of common driving distractions, including eating, taking a selfie, taking off clothing, and consuming alcohol or drugs.
There were 10 distracted driving categories in all. The drivers responded in answers ranging from “0” to “10,” with 0 meaning “never” and 10 signifying they “always” do the dangerous driving habit. So the highest possible score was 100.
St. Louis a Top Distracted Driving City
St. Louisans averaged a distracted driving score of 39.7. Only New York City (43.7) and Washington, D.C. (40.2) had higher average scores and, therefore, comparatively more distracted drivers.
The number one distraction was reading something on a cell phone or tablet while driving. Nearly 60% of all the drivers admitted to doing this careless behavior behind the wheel. Close behind, at 56% of drivers surveyed, was texting while driving. (Missouri is just one of two states that do not have a total ban on texting and driving.)
Most drivers know using a cell phone while driving is dangerous, but it doesn’t stop them. The Zebra reports that six out of 10 drivers (62.9%) said they know they should not use their phone while driving but do anyway.
Interestingly, the company found a big divide between iPhone users and Google Android cell phone users. Just over 70% of Apple users said they video-chatted while driving, whereas less than a quarter of Google Android disciples admitted the same.
Drivers Speeding and Texting
The Zebra also found that those who most often drive distracted are more likely to speed.
The same 2,600 drivers were asked how often they drive at least 10 mph over the speed limit. Drivers who said they speed “all the time” or “often” had an average distraction score of 45.5. Those drivers who said they “rarely” or “never” drive 10 mph over the speed limit enjoyed a much lower distracted driving average score of 28.8.
While it’s usually good to finish near the top in competitions, having an abundance of distracted drivers – as St. Louis does per one calculation – is not a badge of honor. Distracted drivers needlessly kill or seriously hurt innocent victims every day in this country.
If you lost a family member or you were critically injured in a crash caused by a distracted driver, speak to an auto accident lawyer about pursuing the just compensation to which you are entitled.
The choice of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisements.
Authored by Gray, Ritter & Graham, P.C., posted in Blog June 19, 2020