Texting While Driving Popular Among Adults [POLL/AUDIO]
Almost every adult knows texting while driving is unsafe, according to a new poll from AT&T, but nearly half of them do it anyway.
While 60 percent of adults nationwide said they never texted behind the wheel three years ago, 49 percent admit they're doing it now, compared to 43 percent of teenagers.
"Unfortunately, many drivers, regardless of age, have a casual attitude towards using their phones and operating a vehicle," said Gary Poedubicky, Acting Director of the state Division of Highway Traffic Safety. "But research has shown that impairment from texting and driving is right on par with drunk driving."
In 2011, more than 11,000 United States deaths were attributed to texting and driving.
Poedubicky said parents need to set a positive example for their children and young drivers on the road.
"Instant communication and multitasking are part of our daily lives, but when it comes to driving, we can't allow ourselves to be distracted," he said.
New Jersey is one of the many states that strictly prohibit both texting and talking on a hand held cell phone while behind the wheel. Offenders face a $100 fine, a penalty New Jersey lawmakers hope to increase with a measure that has made it to Governor Chris Christie's desk. The bill would increase the first-offense fine to a minimum of $200 and possibly suspend a driver's license if they are convicted of the offense three or more times.