Texting and driving is one of the most dangerous and distracting things to do on the road. In fact, the average text read or sent behind the wheel can take your eyes off the road for around five seconds, which may not seem like a very long time but is more than enough to cause a life-altering accident. You may be aware that texting and driving is bad, but perhaps you are not fully aware of just how bad it really is. And with research suggesting that around 600,000 drivers are using an electronic device whilst driving at any given time during the day, the risk of accidents is incredibly high.
Here are some of the main dangers of texting while driving.
#1. You’re Probably Breaking the Law:
Of course, the potential to cause an accident leading to injury to yourself or others is the biggest risk of texting while driving, but there are other risks involved too. One of the biggest ones is that you risk being caught breaking the law; in most states, texting while driving is a criminal offense and if you are caught doing this on the road, you could land a ticket and a hefty fine. If you are caught texting and driving multiple times then you could face even harsher punishments, including a driving ban or even jail time. If your use of a mobile phone on the road causes the injury or death of another, then you could be facing a serious criminal conviction.
#2. Your Insurance Premium Could Rise:
If you are caught and given a ticket for distracted driving, then you can count on your insurance premiums rising significantly when it comes the time to renew your policy. You may also be required to let your insurance company know immediately if you have any driving-related convictions as a result of texting whilst behind the wheel, which will likely increase your premium significantly for the current year. Bear in mind that failing to inform your insurance company about a distracted driving ticket is a felony and will render your auto insurance policy invalid.
#3. You Could Damage Your Car:
Even if you’re lucky and don’t end up hurting yourself or somebody else in an accident that resulted from texting while driving, you could end up damaging your car. Even small scratches and scrapes can be costly to repair, and your insurance company will be unlikely to cover the cost if they know that you were texting and driving at the time.
#4. What You Should Do:
In every case, you should never use your phone when behind the wheel for any reason. If you use your phone as a navigation device then you should set it up in a suitable holder on your dash and make sure that your route is set up and ready before you switch on the ignition. If you have a smartphone that allows it, turn on driving mode so that you won’t be tempted to look at any notifications when you’re behind the wheel.
Texting and driving might only take a couple of seconds, but that short amount of time could easily be the difference between life and death.