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Summary:

A recent survey of drivers show that gender doesn’t affect one very dangerous statistic, as nearly 25 percent of both men and women admit to texting while driving. That’s an alarming statistic in light of a recent test that shows texting impairs driving more than drinking.

A TeleNav-commissioned survey to determine if gender affects driving habits indicates few differences between men and women behind the wheel, but an alarming one in four respondents admitted to texting while driving — evenly divided between men and women participants. The survey size was small at 502 individuals, but the statistic is worrisome, as a recent Car & Driver test showed that texting can impair a driver more than drinking and driving.

While both sexes agreed that texting while driving should be illegal (89 percent of both men and women), it seems that neither men nor women are fully practicing what they preach. Nearly 25 percent of both male and female respondents reported sending at least one text message while driving per week. Men seem to be the most heavy texters with 36 percent of those who text while driving indicating they send an average of seven or more texts per week while on the road. In contrast, only 23 percent of women admitted to texting as frequently.

Texting while driving seems to be one of those “I know I shouldn’t do it, but I can get away with it” situations. The problem is that, once a driver realizes this mistaken mentality, it’s often too late — it can take an accident or other related tragedy caused by texting and driving before drivers understand that they can’t always get away with it. For that reason, carriers have started to join in on public awareness campaigns to illustrate the dangers that texting brings when operating a vehicle.

Given that TeleNav is a GPS maker, I examined the survey results focused on navigation — 9 percent of men surveyed say they are navigationally challenged while 22 percent of women admitted the same. I can’t say I was surprised that more men were confident in their sense of direction. I personally have to exhaust every option including the position of the sun before I admit that I’m lost or ask for help. But according to the survey results, more men use a GPS than women do, which is a little counter-intuitive. Perhaps GPS usage is adding to the manly navigational abilities? I know I’d feel better about my sense of direction if I was dependent on a satellite-powered device that tells me exactly what to do next.

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  1. If texting gets any more popular across all demographics, pretty soon it will be driving while texting.

    As to GPS and whatever, doesn’t some auto manufacturer, might be Lexus, have a pad-like screen in the middle of the steering wheel? The need for cars that drive themselves is coming faster than anyone would have predicted the turn of the last century.

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  2. A basic problem regarding this issue has not been dealt with in the society yet. It is our addiction to tech in general. We are fusing our work life and personal lives together and the lack of separation and no downtime to smell the earth, see the trees, enjoy friends and communicate verbally in-person is detaching us from a reality that is necessary for survival. Few people take the addiction problem seriously. They laugh it off. Most don’t believe that it can kill you, stress family relationships, cause separation anxiety and a host of other problems that we are just beginning to find out about. These tools have become must haves, eye candy and the fashion statement of cool! Not being connected “in-touch” no matter the consequences needs to be thought out. Parents need to control children’s and teens use of the tools. Of course, they have to lead by example. More and more will be written about the problem as scienc and others learn about the disorders and negative side effects. I’m a technoid for over 25 years and have learned to control my use.

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  3. [...] dangers of texting while driving have been well articulated and researched, although one in four admit to doing it. And I know that people put makeup on in traffic, eat food (guilty), and [...]

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  4. [...] a pain to enter the PIN or swipe the correct pattern while trying to text and drive [Ed. note: texting while driving is not only unsafe, but illegal in many places], but it stops your friends and foes from tweeting from your account if [...]

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  5. [...] on the road while still receiving or sending text messages. I see value not just for drivers, 25 percent of which admit texting while driving, but for the visually impaired as well. AdelaVoice, a startup founded in January of this year, just [...]

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  6. With 39 States having “No Phone or Texting While Driving” Laws in effect by October 1, 2010 you can save yourself the embarrassment and humiliation by getting a new HandsFree way to make phone calls and texting while driving assistance from “Kylee” your new Virtual Assistant provided here.

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