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New forms of distracted driving problematic for teen drivers

One of the rites of spring in Pennsylvania is the return of Major League Baseball. The Pittsburgh Pirates have a great deal of promise coming into the 2015 season as they will try to make another playoff appearance. Another important rite of spring is spring break for kids. The week off during the spring, kids; particularly teen drivers will spend a great deal of time behind the wheel.  With that, distracted driving is an important topic that we must revisit.

Indeed, most teens acknowledge that distracted driving is a bad idea; particularly texting while behind the wheel, and they understand that such habits could lead to terrible accidents. However, since most teens have not been in a major accident, they don’t believe that such an accident would happen to them. Because of this, it is not surprising to see teens doing a number things that should not be done while driving. 

According to an Oregon State University study, teens surveyed admitted to putting on makeup while driving, changing clothes and even doing their homework while driving. While it is arguable that more young drivers are using their cell phones compared to doing their homework behind the wheel, the study exemplifies the dangers that distracted driving still presents.

Moreover, the legal implications of distracted driving cannot be ignored. If a teen is found to have failed to use reasonable care in the moments before an accident, and it is found that such a failure was the proximate cause of the accident (and subsequent injuries) the teen could be held liable. 

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