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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