AAA survey finds people think distracted driving has worsened

Posted at 8:28 PM, Mar 12, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-12 20:28:56-04

The  AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, for the fifth year, has continued its efforts to measure and record the attitudes and behaviors of American drivers; with the intention to “understand—and strengthen—a culture of safety on our roads.”

AAA said that American drivers still maintain an attitude of “do as I say, not as I do” and admit to engaging in the same dangerous behaviors that they criticize as being “unacceptable.”

More than two-thirds of Americans say aggressive drivers are a somewhat or much bigger problem today compared with three years ago. Additionally, AAA reports that nine in 10 people surveyed also felt that distracted driving is worse now than it was three years ago.

Although more than 80% of people surveyed said that texting and emailing is “a very serious threat to safety” and “completely unacceptable,” more than a third surveyed admitted to reading a text or email in the past 30 days. In fact, more than a quarter (26.6%) typed a text or email.

In general, compared with older drivers, younger drivers were more likely to report engaging in distracting behaviors behind the wheel; accepting such behaviors and less likely to support legislation aimed at curbing distractions.

The strongest support was shown for a law banning texting. More than 80% surveyed supported ignition interlock requirements for all offenders (80.5%), and universal helmet laws for motorcyclists (81.7%).

The majority support a hand-held cell phone bans (66.5%) over a total ban, which would prohibit hands-free devices (48.6%).

You can read more here:

The 2012 Traffic Safety Culture Index was released in January 2013. The complete report, along with detailed analyses of drowsy and distracted driving, is available at