• Feb 1st 2011 at 9:58AM
  • 39
Distracted driving kills... cones – Click above to watch the video after the jump

Distracted driving has become a big problem on our nation's roadways, and text messaging while behind the wheel has been targeted as one of the biggest issues. Ray LaHood and the Department of Transportation has made this issue a top safety priority, even writing an op-ed on Autoblog to spread the word.

AAA is is following in LaHood's footsteps, using YouTube to spread awareness that our growing fascination with our phones shouldn't mix with driving time. The post-jump video demonstrates how poorly drivers handled a not-so-tricky cone course in a Nissan Altima while texting and driving.

Those poor, poor orange cones... they never stood a chance.

Hit the jump to watch for yourself, and if you have any young drivers in the house, you may want to have them watch along.

[Source: YouTube]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      In the words of Sammy the limo driver - "They were cones!"
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is a completely stupid test. Real world, who would text at such a critical time of navigating the vehicle? It's not possible to text in a funhouse maze (I liked that description). But you can text if you're driving straight, at a red light, etc.
      • 4 Years Ago
      All that is needed are much more serious consequences to the offending individual. People will continue to do dumb crap until it is at an extreme inconvenience to that person.

      Unfortunate that killing a human being isn't enough, as easily proved with drunk drivers or other people that should never be behind the wheel of a car in the first place. The blame needs to stop being placed on the tool and placed on the people using them.

      I'm sure that people scoffed when radios became available in cars and how distracted drivers would be.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think it's sad that some people are defending texting and driving. Such little regard for other peoples safety. I hope nobody gets into an accident but if you do, I don't know whats going to hurt more, the pain from the collision or the pain from the defendants lawyer giving it to you in the rear.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just looking at that chick's picture pisses me off. I cant tell you how many times a day I see some clueless teeny bopper texting away while driving. In heavy traffic, no less! And for the record Ive seen a few adults doing it, too, but the majority is young girls, with their big, ugly, bug-eyed sunglasses on, driving mommy's big ol SUV. Ill tell you what... if caught texting while driving, offenders should have their licenses revoked for 3 months for a first offense, 6 months for a second offense, and third strike youre OUT, instant license revocation for 2 years minimum, as well as heavy fines. Theres no place for texting on the roads while driving. If you wanna text while sitting stationary at a stoplight, thats fine. But while in motion? SCREW YOU! Some lady in Chicago recently hit a pedestrian while texting, and killed him. Keep your eyes on the road, people!
        • 4 Years Ago
        That's kind of intense man. When I'm meeting someone, I always tell them to text me their address because it's less distracting to read a text than to talk on the phone. If I had to worry about losing my licence for that, what would my alternative be? Read a map? Bigger distraction. GPS? Equal distraction? Written directions? Same thing. Even changing the radio station is a distraction as is adjusting the climate control.

        The point isn't texting. It's learning to mediate risk by knowing when is an appropriate time to do those things. In other words, we don't need bigger blinders, we need smarter horses.
        • 4 Years Ago
        +5 to the OP. Get your stuff together before driving and that way you won't have to use your phone. If I need to make a phone call I'll pull over to a safe spot, otherwise the phone stays in my pocket while I'm driving.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "we don't need bigger blinders, we need smarter horses"

        I think that's what's known in strict engineering terms as 'hitting the nail on the head'
      • 4 Years Ago
      Pfft. Doing anything except focusing 100% on driving will impair your performance in that type of driving environment. I'd like to see them put texting up against talking on the phone, dealing with a screaming child, changing songs on an iPod, drinking a soft drink, eating a burger, putting on makeup, or any of the multitude of things people do behind the wheel.

      It's not the distraction...it's the poor judgement of when and when not to engage in said distraction. I have zero problem with people firing off a quick text or glancing at e-mail when they're stuck at a light, or completely stopped traffic. But if you're trying to text while negotiating a twisty road, or making a left turn across a busy street, etc, yeah don't do that, obviously.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Well these people obviously need to learn how to text better...Do it in straight-aways, and stop lights, geesh!
      • 4 Years Ago
      What a lame test...did anybody expect them to drive better while texting??Genius...
        • 4 Years Ago
        More of this from Autoblog.

        Fact is: car accidents and deaths in car accidents have shown to be inversely related to the number of the phones on the road.

        But still, people perpetuate the "the roads are more dangerous than ever!" tripe.
      • 4 Years Ago
      For all you guys defending texting while driving "on a straight road" I've seen plenty of people testing while on a straight loose their ability to stay in one land or modulate speed. If you need to text, pull over until you are done. I'll admit i've done it myself, but after one close call, I swore it off.

      Anyone who claims they can text and drive without any loss in reaction time or attention to the road, at any point straight roads or not is lying to themselves.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The AVERAGE driver has enough trouble following rules, regulations and etiquette without talking on the phone or texting. I drive for a living, and while anecdotal, I've seen it all! Young, old, male, female... driving skills in general are atrocious!
      • 4 Years Ago
      This public information film says a lot more than words about the issue:

      It's very graphic, so viewer discretion is advised.
      YouTube has set an age restriction of 18 years, because of this,
      but younger drivers should also see it, albeit under parental guidance.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Well to be honest, even without the texting the two women would have still knocked over the cones...
        • 4 Years Ago
        That's exactly what I was going to say...and you're name is Willie...coincidence indeed.
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