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Cellphones cause many more car collisions than reported

Cellphone are causing more car collisions than are being reported.  In a recent study published by the National Safety Council, it was determined that in 2011, only 52 percent of fatal crashes reviewed by the National Safety Council were coded as involving cell phones.  While driver admission of cell phone use is the most valid way to confirm that a cell phone was involved in a crash, even when drivers admit to using a cell phone during car collisions, only 50 percfent of fatal crashes were coded as involving cell phones.  Based on these finding, the NSC concluded that evidence indicates a substantial underreporting of cellphone involvement in fatal crashes. 

In an effort to prevent cellphone related car collisions, here are some safety tips to follow while driving:

  • Don't use a cell phone while you are actively driving.
  • If you must answer a call while driving, pull off of the road and into a safe parking area prior to making a call
  • Use a hands free device if you must make a call while on the road
  • Even if you are using a hand free device while driving, emotional or complex conversations should be postponed until you have stopped driving;
  • Do not sent text messages while driving or read incoming texts while driving.

Remember that starting July 1, 2013, it will be illegal to text while driving and to talk on a handheld cell phone while driving.  West Virginia drivers should utilize hands free devices in order to comply with the change in the law.

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