Car Insurance Provider Encourages Drivers to Hang Up Cell Phones

Woman talking on cell phoneAuto insurance provider AAA, Seventeen Magazine and the U.S. Department of Transportation recently teamed forces to sponsor National Two-Second Turnoff Day.

The event was an effort to prevent distracted driving, especially among younger motorists. The sponsors assert that it only takes a few seconds to turn off a phone before getting behind the wheel — two seconds that could save a life.

Distraction causes a large number of accidents each year. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says approximately 20 percent of all vehicle crashes in 2008 stemmed from a distraction. Furthermore, the organization says that as many as 6,000 people died and more than half a million were injured in 2008 because of a distracted driver.

In August, AAA and Seventeen Magazine conducted a survey revealing that 86 percent of teen drivers surveyed admitted to driving while distracted, even though nearly just as many said they know it’s not a wise decision.

The study also showed that more than one-third of teen motorists believe a form of distraction of their own, or of another driver, has almost resulted in their being in a car accident.

It’s not just talking on the phone that is causing a problem; drivers are also being distracted by sending and receiving text messages. Teens who send messages reported sending an average of 23 a month while behind the wheel.

The car insurance provider hopes National Two-Second Turnoff Day will call attention to the dangers of distracted driving, says AAA’s vice president of public affairs, Kathleen Marvaso.

“Through our campaign to enact bans on texting while driving in all 50 states and other public outreach initiatives, our association has made distracted driving prevention and education a top priority,” said Marvaso

Even if motorists don’t end up seriously hurting themselves or someone else, a car accident can be costly. Drivers looking for car insurance with accidents on their records may see significant premium increases if they were found to be at-fault.

About Ben Zitney
Benjamin Zitney has been covering the auto insurance industry for the past 2.5 years. Before coming to Online Auto Insurance News, he produced an extensive company history of the 30-year-old California Joint Powers Insurance Authority and worked at the Cal State Long Beach Daily Forty-Niner as a reporter, copy editor and news editor.

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