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American Drivers Phone, Text More Often Than European Motorists
Date:3/14/2013

ut of 10 drivers in the United Kingdom said they did so, Naumann said.

"The percentage of drivers who said that they read or sent text or email messages ranged from about 31 percent in the U.S. and Portugal to about 15 percent in Spain," she said.

Among U.S. drivers, the researchers found a similar number of men and women used cell phones, texted or read while driving. This habit was more common among those aged 18 to 44 than those aged 55 and older.

And Naumann doesn't think hands-free devices are the solution.

"They cut down on some of the physical and visual distraction, but once a conversation starts there's still a mental distraction and your mind is taken off the roadway," she said. "So for hands-free or hand-held, you still have that mental distraction."

So far, 33 states and the District of Columbia have restrictions on cell phone use by teens and new drivers while driving. But more research is needed to identify other strategies that can prevent cell phone-related collisions, the CDC said.

More information

For more information on distracted driving, visit the U.S. Department of Transportation .

SOURCES: Rebecca Naumann, MSPH, epidemiologist, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; March 14, 2013, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report


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