Americans are more distracted than ever when they drive. In fact, 46 states and the District of Columbia have laws banning texting and driving, but it seems that texting isn’t the only problem anymore.
With the rise of the ever popular social media apps such as Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, and Twitter, drivers — especially millennials — have the incessant urge to post their whereabouts every second of everyday. Don’t forget the addicting games like Candy Crush and Pokemon Go, the music sharing app Spotify, and even the GPS service Google Maps.
All these apps cause the driver to look away from the road, and practice unsafe driving habits. But for the millennials, the rush that comes with posting a “dangerous” selfie is worth the risk.
Take the state of California. According to a new study by the Auto Insurance Center, drivers in California take more selfies while driving than any other state. In their study, they combed through over 70,000 Instagram posts and found the users writing #DrivingSelfie, #SelfieWhileDriving, and #HopeIDontCrash.
The survey shows that in California and Nevada, there 2.5 posts for every 100,000 residents. Florida had an average of 2.4, and Hawaii had 2.2. However, Hawaii, California, and Nevada all have state laws in place limiting the use of cell phones while driving a motor vehicle.
Florida, though, has no such rules.
In another unsettling survey, the National Safety Council polled drivers of all ages on their driving habits. A whopping 74% admitted to using Facebook while driving, 37% said they would use Twitter, 35% listen to music videos on Youtube, and 33% post selfies on Instagram.
Deborah Hersman, president and CEO for the National Safety Council describes this unsafe trend as a “slippery slope.”
She explains to CNN, “I would say most people see this line as a fairly blurry one and not a bright line.”
Besides distracted driving, driving while tired is also incredibly dangerous. In fact, one in five crashes involving large trucks or busses are caused by fatigue.