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Older drivers can’t text and drive as well as teens

Teens are often cited as violators of texting and driving laws, and researchers always point out that it’s very dangerous, no matter how old someone is. This includes teens, no matter how confident they feel.

That being said, one study does explain some of that confidence. Teens do appear to be “better” at texting and driving than older drivers.

In the study, drivers between the ages of 18 and 59 were examined while texting. Many of them would accidentally drive onto the shoulder or into oncoming traffic lanes. With teens, about 25 percent would make these mistakes — which could be deadly outside of a controlled simulation.

However, researchers noted that about 100 percent of the oldest drivers in the study would leave their lanes when trying to text. While the danger is there for everyone, that means that 75 percent of teens were able to text and drive without causing a crash, while older drivers raised crash risks every single time.

The percentages climbed with age. While teens came in at the aforementioned 25 percent, drivers between the ages of 25 and 34 made mistakes 40 percent of the time. Middle-aged drivers from 35 years old to 44 years old made mistakes 80 percent of the time. Again, the oldest drivers had nearly a 100 percent mistake rate.

This does not excuse texting and driving at any age, but it does show that young people, who may be more familiar with the technology, make fewer mistakes while using it.

No matter how old a driver is, however, if he or she causes an accident while texting and you’re hurt, be sure you know your legal rights.

Source: Healthday, “Middle-Aged Worse at Texting-While-Driving, Study Shows,” Alan Mozes, accessed June 16, 2017

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