Teen drivers ignore cell phone ban

June 11, 2008

Survey results show that a North Carolina cell phone ban for young drivers did not lower their cell phone use, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Survey results show that a North Carolina cell phone ban for young drivers did not lower their cell phone use, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Between one and two months before the ban took effect in December 2006, cell phone use among teen drivers was at 11%. About five months after the ban took effect, nearly 12% of teen drivers were using their phones, most of which where hand-helds.

Fewer than 1% of teens were observed using hands-free devices, while about 2% were observed dialing or texting while driving.

At the 22nd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, a separate study found that participants ages 14 to 20 who made or received more than 15 calls or text messages a day increased their risk for disturbed sleep compared to those who used their cell phones fewer than five times a day.

The heavy cell phone users in the pilot study also had more difficulty waking up and felt more tired during the day than light cell phone users, the investigators reported.