SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WWLP) – One day after a distracted driving bill died in the state legislature, a new survey shows more teens are driving distracted.
Nearly 70% of teens admit they use apps on their phones, while driving. A poll by Common sense media reveals 50% of teens feel addicted to their phones.
Using a cell phone while driving is illegal for teens in Massachusetts. “Just don’t use your phone while driving,” said Auto School instructor Gerald Smith of Agawam Auto School in Agawam.
Another survey found 68% of teenagers admit to texting, making phone calls, and listening to music while behind the wheel. AAA says nearly 60% of teen crashes involve distracted driving.
Trauma Surgeon Dr. Ronald Gross from Baystate Medical Center, told 22news, people involved in car accidents sustain some form of brain injury. That’s anything from a mild concussion to being brain dead.
Texting while driving is already illegal in Massachusetts. A Chicopee state Representative Joseph Wagner, wanted to ban cellphone use while driving, unless hands-free technology was used. That bill died Sunday on Beacon Hill.
Agawam Auto School teaches future drivers to make their car, a ‘no phone zone.’ “If you get a call you don’t have to answer, right then and there. You can pull off the road and then answer it. Is it worth your life or somebody else’s life, to use that cellphone, while you are driving?” said Smith.
Dr. Gross is all too familiar of the outcomes of driving distracted. “It infuriates me, because everybody knows about this. They know what they’re doing and know that it’s wrong. And they continue to do it and now you have lives that are destroyed in one way or the other,” said Gross.
Agawam Auto school told 22News you have the same chance of being involved in an accident talking on a phone, as driving under the influence of alcohol.