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People Text and Drive, Despite Knowing the Dangers, Survey Shows

/ Source: Associated Press

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Nearly everyone agrees that texting and driving is dangerous. Most people do it anyway. In a new survey, 98 percent of motorists who own cellphones and text regularly said they were aware of the dangers, yet three-quarters of them admitted to texting while driving, despite laws against it in some states. Two-thirds said they have read text messages while stopped at a red light or stop sign, while more than a quarter said they have sent texts while driving.

More than a quarter of the texting drivers believed they "can easily do several things at once, even while driving." The telephone survey of 1,004 U.S. adults was released Wednesday by AT&T Inc. as part of an anti-texting-and-driving campaign. AT&T designed the survey with David Greenfield, founder of The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction and a professor at the University of Connecticut's School of Medicine. The survey came as AT&T expanded availability of a free app that silences text message alerts and activates automatically when a person is moving 15 miles per hour or faster. (Passengers can turn it off.) The study in May was of cellphone owners ages 16 to 65 who drive almost every day and text at least once a day. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. Researchers conducted surveys with people on their cellphones, and it's possible those who would have picked up on a landline might have different attitudes.

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