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Car crash deaths of Colorado teens blamed on cell phone use

Many parents impress upon their Colorado teens the dangers of drinking and driving. This is a good start, but many car crash deaths involving teens are blamed on cell phones rather than driving under the influence. It takes mere seconds for traffic patterns or road conditions to change. If a teen, who is typically an inexperienced driver already, is not paying attention during that time, a serious or deadly accident could easily occur.

Survey data indicate that, in the last 30 days alone, an average of 41 percent of teens were on their cell phones instead of paying attention to the road. In some states, that percentage is as high as 61 percent. One teenage girl taking a defensive driving course said that she only uses her phone to play music while she drives and admits to looking at the phone to change songs.

That is more than enough time for an accident to occur. A driving instructor here in Colorado has been teaching law enforcement officials how to drive for nearly 17 years. He also teaches teenagers the same driving tactics. He believes that driving is only 10 percent physical, and the other 90 percent is mental.

No text, email or other cell phone activity is important enough to risk becoming involved in a car crash. However, someone will always think it is important, and while they are distracted, may seriously injure or kill him- or herself and/or someone else. The injured party -- or the family of a deceased victim -- retains the right to file a civil action against the party or parties deemed responsible, seeking damages for the unavoidable financial burdens associated with car accidents.

Source: thedenverchannel.com, "Texting, distraction blamed for teen traffic deaths", , June 14, 2014

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