The stereotypical visual that might pop into a person’s head at the mention of distracted driving is probably an 18-year-old with music blaring and the windows of her car rolled down as she is staring at her phone and laughing at her latest text message. Maybe it is time to reevaluate society’s understanding of who is putting the needless danger of cell phone distractions on Pennsylvania roads and roads nationwide.

State Farm conducted a survey about the popularity of smart phones among all ages of drivers. The insurance company also surveyed participants about their attitudes regarding the dangers of cell phones and other driving distractions. The results suggest that age could be nothing but a number regarding texting and cell phone use in the car.

Research shows that in 2013, about 86 percent of drivers between the ages of 30 and 39 have smart phones. About 64 percent of drivers between the ages of 50 and 64 have the internet-capable devices, with more than a third of drivers older than that also having them. Combined with the amount of younger drivers who most popularly have smart phones, it is easy to see how the risk of distraction is all over the roads, no matter the age of drivers.

Fortunately, age is also nothing but a number when a distracted driving accident in Pennsylvania leads to injury or death. When a young or older driver makes the decision to check email, read or send a text or do a web search while driving, that is negligence. That kind of cellphone-related negligence significantly increases the likelihood of a crash.

Someone who has been injured in a car accident that they believe was the cause of cellphone use should discuss the matter with a personal injury lawyer. An attorney can look at cellphone records and determine whether a driver was distracted at the time of the crash.

Source: Insurance Journal, “Older Drivers Catching Up with Younger in Distracted Driving: Survey,” Nov. 12, 2013