89% of Americans want text-and-drive ban, 57% say they do it anyway

  • San Jose (CA) - Around nine in ten Americans think it's dangerous to text while driving, even though more than half say they have committed the offense.

    A new Harris Interactive survey found that 91% of Americans said texting while driving was as dangerous as driving under the influence of a couple drinks.  89% said texting and driving should be illegal.

    Even so, 57% of the 2,049 adults polled who drive and use text messaging on separate occasions said they have also done both activities at the same time.  66% said they have read messages while behind the steering wheel.

    Of those who admitted to texting while driving, 64% were between the ages of 18 and 34, and 6% were over age 55.

    Washington became the first state to officially outlaw the dangerous act when it passed a texting-while-driving ban in May.  California, Florida, New York, and a handful of others have introduced similar legislation in the past but none have been signed into law so far.

    Pinger, the company that commissioned the survey, offers hands-free voice-driven mobile messaging services.