Texting behind the wheel is more dangerous than driving under the influence of drink or drugs, according to research by the Transport Research Laboratory.
Despite the risk, just under half of British drivers aged 18-24 admitted to texting while driving – a group that’s already far more likely to have an accident.
TRL’s results revealed that drivers who text behind the wheel suffered a 35 per cent deterioration in their reaction time – worse than alcohol at the legal limit (12 per cent) and cannabis (21 per cent).
Commenting on the findings, Professor Stephen Glaister, director of the RAC Foundation, said: "This research clearly shows that a motorist who is texting is significantly more impaired than a motorist at the legal limit for alcohol.
"We need to ensure that text devotees understand that texting is one of the most hazardous things that can be done while in charge of a motor car."
Legislation designed to curb the use of mobile phones while driving is limited to phone calls. Almost 5,000 texts are sent in the UK each second.
Written by Charlie Gilbert