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11/28/2011 - Texting while driving common among teens despite awareness

Many teens continue to text behind the wheel.

While teenage drivers are more aware of the dangers of texting while driving, the behavior is still common, a new survey reveals.

According to a poll conducted by Students Against Destructive Decisions, 53% of nearly 2,300 high school students surveyed said they text while driving occasionally, with 28% confessing to doing it frequently.

Stephen Wallace, senior advisor for policy research and Education for SADD, said parents can play a crucial role in deterring the practice.

"While it's important for parents to know where their children are and what they are doing, they need to take a firm stance against texting while driving and other distracted driving behaviors," said Wallace. His research shows that despite awareness campaigns and laws against texting while driving, it's a common behavior among teens that parents inadvertently may be aiding.

The survey also determined who teens most frequently text while driving. Approximately 63% it tended to be their mom and dad, up from 55% when a similar poll was conducted two years ago.

More than 30 states have laws prohibiting distracted driving. Penalties for the behavior can result in fines and auto insurance premiums increases in addition to the heightened risk of a serious accident. As always, Selective encourages all drivers to stay safe and drive carefully on the road. For more driving safety tips, click here

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