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Teens get behind the wheel to test texting and driving skills

Distracted driving killed 3,092 people in 2010 and injured an estimated 416,000 more. Texting and driving has become an epidemic and AT&T is on a national tour to teach students about the dangers of texting and driving. AT&T brings a simulator to high schools across the country to let teens find out how easy it truly is to get in an accident while texting and driving.

The simulator involves an actual vehicle and the teens put on goggles that simulate real hazards and actual road conditions. The teens can then text while they are driving and discover how hard it is to see pedestrians and other cars coming by. The teens are then asked to sign a pledge saying they will never text and drive.

The students are also taught about a Drive Mode app that AT&T offers for iPhones and android devices. This app sends an alert to people who are calling and texting others when they are driving.

There are other forms of distracted driving beyond text messaging but text messaging is very common and it increases one's risk of crash by 23 times. AT&T and other groups want to get the message out to teens and adults alike that a text message can wait and lives are at stake when people text and drive.

Many people think that there are safe times to text, for example, when it appears that nobody is on the road, but this is never true. Brain activity is reduced by about 37 percent when a driver is using a cell phone. Drivers need to be aware of their surroundings at all times. Just taking their eyes of the roads for a few seconds can change a person's life forever. When sending or receiving a text message, drivers look away from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, in this amount of time a driver driving 55 mph will travel about the length of a football field.

Texting and driving causes thousands of accidents every year. People injured in an accident with a distracted driver deserve relief. A personal injury attorney can help those injured in a car accident seek legal remedies and obtain the compensation they deserve.

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