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Teens still text and drive, despite understanding the risks

People in Portland know that as the seasons change and the school year ends, more teens are on the roads driving. These kids come from a generation that uses texting as one of their main forms of communication. When a teen, or an adult, uses text messaging while driving, car accidents can often be the tragic result.

A recent study reports that 43 percent of teens said they text while driving. This large number is supplemented by the assertion that 75 percent of them say many of their friends do it too. They also say that the adults they know also regularly text while driving. Many admit they also check for messages and text while at a stop light, a practice some of them even acknowledge is risky.

It almost goes without saying that distracted drivers are a major cause of car accidents. These crashes sometimes lead to injuries to the driver, passengers and others in or near the roadway. In an effort to limit teen texting while driving, AT&T has arranged for a texting simulator to make a tour of 30 separate U.S. markets to demonstrate the dangers of being distracted by electronics while on the roadways. Portland is one of the cities scheduled for a visit.

In the end, of course, responsibility for safe and responsible driving rests with the driver, and it is certainly hoped that all motor vehicle operators -- not just teenagers -- will heed the warnings and place their safety, as well as that of others, ahead of texting a message that could tragically be the last one they ever send.

Source: Inside Line, "Teens Know Texting and Driving Is Dangerous, Yet Do It Anyway, AT&T Survey Reveals," Rene Wisely, May 15, 2012

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