Ignoring Texting Bans May Increase Your Insurance
Everyone does it, so it can’t be that dangerous, right? Wrong. Even though most of your friends may still be texting while driving, doesn’t mean it is a safe practice. Taking your eyes off the road for a few seconds to read a text message dramatically increases your chances that you will be involved in a crash. To reduce the number of accidents, many states have passed laws banning texting while driving. However, a recent study by the Highway Loss Data Institute shows that most drivers ignore these bans. But remember even a fender bender can increase your insurance rates. If you are involved in an accident and you want to lower your premium, apply for auto insurance quotes.
In its study of four states that passed anti-texting laws, HLDI found that the number of accidents didn’t decrease. The results are similar to another HLDI study that found that banning hand-held phones while driving didn’t reduce crashes. However, in this case, the number of accidents actually increased in three states after the bans were enacted. Accidents among drivers 24 years old and younger increased the most. HDLI research suggests that younger drivers are not only ignoring texting bans, but may also be taking the time to hide their cell phones after they text to avoid getting a ticket. Being involved in an accident will likely increase your insurance rates. If you want to find the lowest premium, shop around for insurance quotes.
Texting while driving is most prevalent among 18- to 24-year-olds. In states that have texting bans, 45 percent of younger drivers report that they still text. That is slightly lower than the 48 percent of drivers who reported texting in states without bans, according to HLDI. Many respondents who knew it was illegal to text said they didn’t think police were strongly enforcing the bans. HLDI, an affiliate of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, questions whether the laws are effective, given that drivers face so many distractions. However, a 2009 study showed texting while driving is a major distraction. If you’re texting, you’re 23 times more likely to have a crash compared to drivers who aren’t distracted. That’s even higher than if you were talking on a cell phone.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood criticized HLDI’s study, citing Department of Transportation research showing that when the anti-texting laws are strictly enforced they are effective. Thirty states as well as Washington D.C. ban texting while driving. Some laws are tougher than others. More than 20 other states consider texting a primary offense. That means a police officer can give a ticket to a driver who is observed texting or holding a cell phone. If you get a ticket, you may not be eligible for a safe-driver discount. Make sure you ask about discounts, when you obtain auto insurance quotes.
Once you have done your research, you are ready to shop around for lower auto insurance rates. You can call agents in your local area, contact insurance companies directly or use InsuranceQuotes.com to instantly get competitive auto insurance quotes from the nation’s leading insurance providers. Simply fill out an online form on InsuranceQuotes.com to find the right insurance coverage at the best possible price. Take the time to protect you and your family today.