How Cell Phones Affect Car Insurance

Are you one of the many drivers who just can’t resist placing a call on your cell phone while you are behind the wheel? If so, you need to ensure you have adequate collision and liability insurance in place. Parents of teenagers who always carry a cell phone and are first learning how to drive should also make sure you sufficient insurance coverage for young drivers. The reason is that placing or answering cell phone calls has caused many accidents. If you end up in a motor vehicle accident while fiddling with your cell and driving, you may face heavy fines, hefty insurance premiums or cancellation of your existing auto insurance policy.

Dangers of Cell Phones & Driving

Modern conveniences such as MP3 players and cell phones have results in unsafe driving conditions throughout the world. The Australian Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has conducted research that reveals the dangers of driving while using a cell phone; according to their findings, drivers who are distracted while using a cell phone end up in accidents four times more often. Cell phones impair a driver’s ability to hear people, horns and sirens, and they distract a driver’s attention.

Surprising Statistics

The University of Utah, University of Rhode Island, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the University of North Carolina also conducted a study involving cell phone use and driving. The results may surprise you; individuals who drive while engaged in a cell phone discussion are just as dangerous as motorists who drink and drive. A further study completed by the University of North Carolina also revealed that a driver who is talking on a cell phone is two times more likely to hit the car in front of them, when compared to drivers who don’t use cell phones while driving. However, a study completed by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign also proved that talking to other passengers in a vehicle does not have similar distracting effects.

Solution Attempts

There is no perfect solution to the problem of driving while talking on a cell phone. Studies reveal that requiring motorists to use Bluetooth earbuds, headsets or hands-free mobile phones does not improve driver safety. Turning off your cell phone so you won’t be distracted while behind the wheel is one obvious solution. However, this is unlikely to happen for the majority of cell phone users, thanks to human nature.

One top insurance provider recently conducted a survey that indicated 73 percent of every driver talks on a cell phone while they are behind the wheel. Consequently, certain states such as Utah, Connecticut, Virginia, New York, District of Columbia and New Jersey have instigated laws that prohibit drivers from using a cell phone when driving. Washington and California also enacted similar laws in 2008. Other states have passed laws that restrict or forbid young drivers from using a cell phone whenever they are driving. Believe it or not, authorized personnel in these states can issue a motorist a citation for DWT or Driving While Texting!