Healthday - Health News Distribution, Health News Licensing, Health Content Syndication

Contact HealthDay
Tel: 203.855.1400 or E-mail

HealthDay Press Contact
Reyna Machado
631-582-9000 ext 102

Most U.S. Drivers Engage in 'Distracting' Behaviors: Poll

Cell phone talk, texting, even applying makeup: Most know it's dangerous,
but many do it anyway

NORWALK, Connecticut, USA (November 30, 2011) – Whether it's talking on cell phones, fiddling with food and drink, or doing some last-minute grooming, a large majority of adult drivers in the United States admit to being dangerously distracted while behind the wheel, today’s Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll found.

Specifically 86 percent of adults admitted to eating/drinking while driving, 59 percent talk on a non-hands-free cell phone, 41 percent set or adjust their GPS device, and 37 percent text. Additionally, a quarter of respondents said they have driven after having two or more drinks, and 44 percent said they've felt sleepy while driving, "sometimes even momentarily dozing off." Smaller percentages (7 and 12 percent, respectively) said they drive this way "sometimes or often."

Today’s Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll also uncovered other common driving distractions:

  •   Reading a map: 36 percent admitted doing so, and 10 percent do it often or
      sometimes.
  •   Combing/styling hair: one in five drivers acknowledged doing this at least once;
      nearly 1 in 10 does it more regularly.
  •   Applying makeup: 14 percent have done it at least once, 7 percent say they do it
      frequently.
  •   Surfing the Internet: 13 percent have done so while driving and 9 percent do it
      often/sometimes.
  •   Watching videos (on a mobile device or in-board system): 7 percent say they do
      this "often or sometimes."

"The number of drivers who engage in potentially dangerous, in some cases extremely dangerous, behaviors while driving is terrifyingly high, particularly when you remember that every 1 percent of drivers polled represents more than one-and-three-quarters of a million people," said Humphrey Taylor, chairman of The Harris Poll.

"While we have some information on how dangerous some of these behaviors are (driving after drinking, talking on cell phones, falling asleep, texting) we can only speculate as to the numbers of accidents and deaths that are caused by the many millions of people who drive while setting their GPS, eating or drinking, surfing the Internet, watching videos, combing their hair, reading or applying makeup," added Taylor.

The survey also turned up a puzzling disconnect: While big percentages of drivers agree that distracting behaviors are dangerous, many still engage in them.

The poll included 2,810 U.S adults over age 18 who were surveyed online between November 10 to 14, 2011, byHarris Interactive, one of the world's leading custom market research firms, and HealthDay, a leading producer and syndicator of health news.

The complete findings of the newest joint Harris Interactive/HealthDay poll are available here.  HealthDay's news report is available here. Full data on the poll and its methodology are available at Harris Interactive.

###

About HealthDay
HealthDay is a leading producer and syndicator of evidence-based health news for consumers and physicians and is one of the largest health news syndicators to Internet sites. Its daily consumer health news service http://consumer.healthday.com/ appears on more than 5,000 websites such as Yahoo!, MSN Health, USNews.com, Everyday Health, and government websites like Healthfinder.gov, and MedlinePlus. A daily video version of the top health news story of the day is featured on HealthDay TV, a 90-second daily news broadcast appearing on several major media and U.S. government websites.

HealthDay also produces Physician's Briefing (www.physiciansbriefing.com), a daily news service for physicians and other medical professionals. This service is licensed to hospitals, managed care organizations, media companies, and point of care providers like ePocrates.

HealthDay's custom content division produces specialized content for a variety of audiences and works with some of the larger health portals in the United States.

About Harris Interactive

Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading custom market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers expertise in a wide range of industries including healthcare, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Serving clients in over 215 countries and territories through our North American, European, and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.

Legal Statement | Copyright © 2015 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here.
This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify.