New VT Study Shows Teen Drivers Most At Risk For Distracted Driving

Blacksburg, VA - Virginia Tech researchers looked at distracted driving records and found your teenager could be the most at risk.

Everything from cell phones, to the radio, to turning on the air conditioning can increase their chances of crashing.

Researchers have determined that as teens become more comfortable behind the wheel, their chances of becoming distracted very quickly increases.

Researchers analyzed in-car data that captured driving habits, including the moments leading up to a nearly 500 crashes and near crashes.

What the data found, as an example, was veteran drivers doubled their risk of an incident when dialing on a cellphone.

In new drivers, the odds of an incident shot up 800 percent.

Researchers hope parents, teens and legislators take notice, but even more importantly they want manufactures to pay attention too.

"One of the big results here is that it is eyes off road time that is increasing risk so we need to be designing systems and designing phones and any blue tooth systems that are truly hands free," said VTTI Researcher Dr. Charley Klauer.

In all, nearly 50 teens from around the Roanoke and New River Valleys were monitored for up to 18-months.

The data was compared to data from about 100 adults in the D.C. area.

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