A recent survey has revealed that 35 percent of college students still use mobile phone applications while driving, despite having faced the dangers firsthand.
According to the University of Alabama study, one in 10 "often", "almost always" or "always" use mobile phone applications while driving. Also, more than one-third admitted to using them "sometimes".
"The participants seemed to understand that using mobile apps while driving is dangerous, and some have even experienced motor vehicle crashes while using mobile apps, but they continue to do it," UAB student Lauren McCartney, who conducted the survey, said.
The survey included 93 UAB students who owned a smartphone and used Internet-based applications on it at least four or more times per week.
"Driving a car is an incredibly complex task for humans to complete safely," David Schwebel, Ph.D., director of the UAB Youth Safety Lab, said.
"There are enormous cognitive, perceptual and motor tasks an automobile driver must complete, frequently very quickly and with split-second precision.
"A driver using his or her smartphone is clearly distracted, both visually and cognitively, and really should not be driving.
"The fact that 10 percent of college students with smartphones 'often' are using them while driving is astounding, the fact that 35 percent 'sometimes' do is equally concerning," he added.
The study will be presented at the 119th American Psychological Association (APA) convention in Washington, D.C.