A study conducted by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) find that laws against texting and driving do not reduce the incidence of car accidents. In what seems like a counter-intuitive result, the study found that car accidents actually went up in four states where texting and driving bans were enacted.
“Texting bans haven’t reduced crashes at all. In a perverse twist, crashes increased in 3 of the 4 states we studied after bans were enacted. It’s an indication that texting bans might even increase the risk of texting for drivers who continue to do so despite the laws.” — Adrian Lund, president of both HLDI and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The accompanying chart shows the number of car accident insurance claims per 100 insured drivers prior to and after Washington’s cell ban went into effect which is Vehicle Code RCW 46.61.668 “Sending, Reading, Or Writing a Text Message While Driving.” Washington state is the red light and the graph compares it with the number of accidents in Idaho and Oregon.
It seems like drivers are just not complying with texting bans. The new laws seems to make motorists more secretive about their texting so they hide their cell phones in their laps which causes them to keep looking down.
Highway Loss Data Institute Texting bans don’t reduce crashes; effects are slight crash increases
Posted: September 28, 2010
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