Older drivers may be worse at texting and driving, new research finds

A new study discovered that older drivers may be worse at texting and driving simultaneously than drivers in younger age groups.

Many in Missouri assume that younger and more inexperienced drivers are significantly more dangerous to other drivers, passengers and pedestrians when they operate a vehicle and text simultaneously. While this form of distracted driving is a hazardous activity for drivers of all ages to engage in, a new study reveals that older drivers may actually be worse at texting behind the wheel.

How was the study conducted?

To come to this conclusion, U.S. News states that the researchers divided the 50 participants into four separate groups based on age. Then, each participant was asked to operate a driving simulator that created a realistic roadway experience for a period of 30 minutes. At some point during the testing session, each participant was also asked to conduct a text messaging conversation with one hand while going 50 to 60 mph for several minutes. Researchers found that only 25 percent of the youngest participants, or those between the ages of 18 to 24, would veer into the oncoming lane while operating the simulator and texting at the same time. In comparison, nearly 100 percent of the participants in the oldest age group would accidentally veer into the oncoming lane while trying to text and drive. The researchers who conducted this study are not sure why the difference in texting and driving ability among the older and younger participants exists. However, some suspect that older drivers may be less capable of multitasking or spend more time looking down at their phone while reading or composing a text message.

Why is texting and driving so dangerous?

Although this study suggests that younger drivers may be better at texting and driving than older drivers, texting and driving puts drivers of all ages at risk of causing an accident that results in life-altering injuries for those involved. According to research conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, text messaging creates a crash risk that is 23 times greater for a driver than when he or she is not distracted. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that texting and driving is one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving because it combines all three types of distraction. These include manual, visual and cognitive distraction.

Seeking compensation

Missouri drivers involved in an accident caused by a distracted driver may sustain injuries that harm them financially, emotionally and physically. If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident due to another person’s negligence, reach out to an attorney in your area to determine what compensation may be available to you.