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Eating may be top driving distraction


They may not think it's safe, but most drivers responding to a new poll admit to keeping one eye and one hand on a meal while driving. Eating a meal turned out to be the most-common distracting activity drivers undertake. In fact, 65 percent of drivers stated they eat while driving, according to a PEMCO Insurance poll on driver distraction.

While eating took the top spot on the survey, 58 percent of drivers acknowledged they talk on a cell phone while driving. Drivers also thought both eating and cell phone use while driving were unsafe, along with several other common driving distractions. The poll of 600 Washington residents also asked drivers to rate the danger of several common distracted driving activities. Each activity was rated on a scale from one to five, with one being "completely safe" and five being "very dangerous."

While 65 percent of respondents admitted to eating a meal while driving, that activity received a "danger rating" of 3.8 on the five-point scale. Talking on a cell phone was regarded as a 4.0 in danger, while reading a newspaper or book, something only six percent of drivers admit to, got the top danger rating of 4.9. Writing a text message (4.8), applying makeup or shaving (4.6) and the ever-popular steering with legs and no hands on wheel (4.7) also recorded serious danger rankings from the respondents. Some 25 percent of all drivers say they have steered with no hands at some time in their driving lives, while 14 percent say they have applied makeup or shaved.

"We found that when drivers eat food or call a friend, they do so despite thinking it's dangerous," said Jon Osterberg, PEMCO Insurance spokesperson. "Our goal is to help drivers understand that when they do that, they're going against their better judgment."

The poll showed a significant trend: the more drivers admitted to performing a distracting activity, the less dangerous they saw that activity.

Studio One NetworksEnd of Article

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All Comments (75)

Showing 1 - 75 comments

Chuggy,

Guess holding that beer between my legs is safe then, as long as I don't drink until I stop.

npqrogz,

HH5QBg sbpmhrjmjxqb

Helene,

At last! Soemone who understands! Thanks for posting!

Nick,

The sherrif Nick, doesnt like to eat and drive so u shudnt too!

Nadia,

Thanks I really needed this info!

kevin,

so people please stop eating while drivind

kevin,

people should not eat while driving cuz they end up in an accident and will die or end up in a coma

Bianca,

I have to write a speech and this is good

lool,

what da helll it is sooo bad to eat and
drive what r u talking bout!!!!

lilil,

true dat but give examples more!!!

BoogetyKing,

Well they're not going to make eating and driving illegal because mainly McDonalds and the other fast food restaurants would go out of business! Why be able to have a drive thru for food if you can't eat the food while you drive? So they'd basically have to make drive thrus illegal and that just isn't going to happen. Just watch out for idiots who get blood on their burger.

Derisha S.,

eating while driving is the most dangerous thing ti do. Because you coule kill your self an others.

tori,

eating and driving is bad... my uncle died from someone eating and drivin

josh,

eating and driving is ok i guess but if you fart it will wreck you food

mara,

this site is really weird you shoould be able to eat and drive

temor,

i love u batul

abdul,

batul ur a retared ur the one who is doing this as ur project dumbass and sergey aka shaima lol

Sergey,

I HAVE AN OPINION, NOW YOU ALL SEE ABDUL IS RIGHT, ALSO I THINKK THIS IS THE BEGGINING OF A NEW FRIENDSHIP !!!!! :D

baatul,,

THIS IS SOOOO STUPID!
I LOVE EATING IM SOOOO FREAKIN' FATT!
I LOVE FOOD!
LOVE IT, LOVEIT, LOVE IT!!
ABDUL JUST SHUT UP!
NO ONE IS GOING TO CHANGE THE LAW BECAUSE OF YOU!

abdul :),

i think that driving while eating is very dangerous and should be STOPED

skillz that killz,

haha, i have 5 kids who eat in the car all the time and we haven't wrecked yet blah blah blah shut up!

People are going to do what they want to do. You can't control people.

It's like a relationship, you can't make your boyfriend/girlfriend do anything they don't want to.

So why doesn't everyone just chill about this and stop all the controversy?

I thought about this a lot...

So im gonna end this with a f*** you, and have a nice day. :)

Haha,

I also agree with Anothy!! good job Anthony!!

misty,

i agree with anthony about the whole if u cant eat and drive thing u must be really driving challenged becasue i can eat and drive and ive only been driving for about a yr

misty,

ok this is silly that using a cell phone is banned but u can still eat and drive whuch is just as dangerous goodness what is the driving world coming to

-_- lol ;-),

.............
Sum of u don't make sense
.........
WTH
.........
bye =)

chloe,

yeah im special for caring about my children and their safety!!!! its called being a good parent...not that you would know that!!!!

Anthony,

Chloe you are very special if you know what I mean, and GO CHARLIE

charlie,

I LOVE TO EAT WHILE I'M DRIVING AND I'M ONLY 972 POUNDS THIN!!!!!! I BEAT ANOREXIA!!!!!!!!!

Shawndia,

I must admit that I am no angel when it comes to eating and driving but I truely believe that it is dangerous and advoid doing it as much as possible. I think that when it comes to my life and a burger.....I choose my life and the lives of others without a doubt.

chloe,

it sounds to me that your really not a great father!! At least i take care of my chlidren and love them very much!! I seriously think you should try theorpy!!! And amen to you kelsey i like your thinking and good luck on the speech.

Anthony,

Chloe Chloe Chloe...
I'm not worried about my kids starving to death, I'm afraid that I'm going to kill the screaming little brats. Besides anyone who can drive worth a crap is able to both eat and drive. If you are unable to eat and drive go and redo drivers ed with all of the adolesants who share your maturity level.

Kelsey,

I am doing a speech on eating while driving, i think everything you say is very true, but what makes me mad is why can't people just hold on for the ride home. yes the food smells great but, i think we could put the food in the back seat! that way we can resist the urge to eat the fries out of the bag lol

chloe,

Anthony lets be mature about this...they all can wait intill they get home thier not going to die they can eat at restraunts thats what there for..... i have 5 kids i know how it feels!!!!!!!! you know what they say when life hands you lemons you make lemonade!!!!!!!!!

Anthony,

All right Chloe
Get off of your high pedistale and join the normal working american. pretend you're married and have 3 kids. you're running late and everyone screaming I'M HUNGRY!!!!!!!!
What are you going to do go in the restraunt or eat in your car. Join the real world pull your head out of your butt and SHUTUP

*Hannah*,

That would be bad if someone choked on their food while driving. It could seriously mess up their driving and not be focused on the road. So yeah people don't eat and drive.

chloe,

ok Anthony... picture this your driving and you see this semi coming toward you your first thought is im going to die!! you find out that that driver is eating. he put your life in risk!!!!! that is not worth a hamburger if you ask me........... and if im not mistaking semi drivers have a place 2 eat in the back.

Anthony,

OK people I wrote a comment earlier that was a total joke. You need to realize that there are people who don't have the time to stop and eat. contractors, truck drivers, ME.
If you feel like eating while driving is wrong thats OK. Don't try to force your ideals on other people though. This country has enough laws trying to tell other people what to do. Lets not try to introduce another one.

*Hannah*,

Eating and driving is way too dangerous. People should never eat and drive. People should eat in the restraurant so they don't eat and drive. So people the next time you order that juicy hamburger don't eat it when you drive! Happy driving everyone! :-)

Anthony,

The human brain can only do so many things at once. If you are trying to control a 2000 pound piece of steel flying down the freeway at 65 mph and stuff your face at the same time, you are a RETARD somthing is bound to go wrong sooner or later.

Thats why I feel I should do it less often.

chloe,

ok i seriously think that eating and driving is bad!!! People shouldn't put their lives in jeopardy for a hamburger!!!!!!!!!! WHAT IS THIS WORLD COMING TO!!!!!!!!

DK,

'That guy' is right. Some people CAN do several things at once, just like some people can juggle several hatchets at once. I've watched one driver operate a stickshift while talking on a phone and also eating an ice cream - and do it apparently competently.

However, a word of warning. Don't get over confident. You can get away with all kinds of things in driving and not crash, or even have someone blow their horn at you, but how do you know how well you are doing unless you are highly experienced and/or skilled. You won't be operating at peak performance if you are distracted.

Crashes only happen in special circumstances and they are rare. At 17, do you really have the experience to know how much risk you are taking.

Anyway, rather than getting angry about eating or talking on a phone while driving why not concentrate on how well we drive. Penalize people for BAD DRIVING, not for things that may or may not cause bad driving.

That Guy,

You peolple that are complaining about eating and driving need to shut up. Seriously, i am a 17 year old high school student and i can drive perfectly fine while eating and talking on a cell phone AT THTE SAME TIME! If you are too stupid to be able to eat or talk on a cell phone while driving then you should take a competancy test before YOU drive again!

the man,

what in the world are you saying jack this is a serious problem

jack,

FUBAR
fubar
FUBAR
fubar
FUBAR
fubar

=],

You argue that if you can eat while driving without any problem then its fine.. but you can also talk on the phone and drive.. why is talking on the phone more dangerous than eating in the car? when all you do when talking on the phone is hold the phone and talk and when eating depending on what you have you have to unwrap, make sure it doesn's spill and etc?

one more point.. shit happens.. even if you are careful there are shitty drivers out there.. hence the reason why, most of the time, there is always 1 innocent driver, who did nothing wrong.

when?,

Angry much?

what?,

is it too hard to ask to just stop in a parking lot for FIVE minutes, FIVE FUCKING MINUTES!!! and eat your shitty greasy ass burger there? huh? I mean youd rather eat a drive and put not only yourself in danger but everyone around you? What if a slice of pickle falls on to the center console and you look down to pick it up, the second you look back at the road your staring at the front on a semi like its the barrel of a fully loaded Smith&Wesson M29 .44 Magnum. And you like SHIT SHIT SHIT!....overcorrection time! bam you hit the side of the railing thats preventing you from falling into a 60 degree drop, skkkrch! back onto the other side of the road and your car flips over. You wake up in a hospital with multiple lacerations to the torso and youve lost control of you body from the waist down. All because you couldnt stop for FIVE minutes, FIVE FUCKING MINUTES!!! and enjoy your greasy-ass-congestive-heart-failure-causing-burger you end up having some sick scars and your are put into a wheelchair for life...nice job.

BIZZZZY,

everyone shut up

bdizzle.,

oh lordy.....i eat and drive:)

Laura,

how dare you use the Lord's name in vein!

Kendra,

Thank God you can spell!

mimi,

well some people can eat and drive at the same but its not safe for any who has to be on the same road b'cuz they could get hit or some thing.

Shaquala,

I do think driving and eating is dangerous. But if ur skilled enough to pull it of w/o hurting ny1 and u have absolutely no time available to eat other wise then its acceptable

Lux,

Seriously. You're response time is NOT always slower due to eating food, it is dependant on many things, for the most part, the person. You are complete idiots if you factor in numbers and not common sense. You will be so overworked about what you "should not" do while driving that it will be much more stressful than the relaxing state of comfort you get from the several commodoties vehicles these days provide. "your gay," I agree with you. Because as for myself, I love eating "donats" while I "swirve" all over your lane, but you wanna know something? I'm swirving because I want to hit the idiot, you, who is enforcing all of this BS.

your gay,

Half of you here don't even speak the english language correctly. Rebecca is probably from Cyprus, so its ok that she doesn't speak english correctly. Donats? Swirve? Bec? Fodd? Come on people.

Jewel,

Look,i don't know what its like to be a person in college that has to work, go to school, and have no time to eat. I'm in high school. But, what i do know is that driving while being distracted such as eating food is unsafe for you and other people on the road. So do yourself and everyone else a favor and don't drive distracted. Those of you that say it isn't a big deal well it is when your the cause of a crash that kills. Think about it.

Hannah,

oh, by the way. we dont think its a sin to eat while u drive, whatever, its that ur response time is slower so u could cause an accident, then it would b YOUR FAULT!

Hannah,

Are u kidding?! Eating at red lights is NOT going to help! u will b so focused on food, ur response time wont b so good so it'll take more time to respond when the light turns green. thats not a smart idea. SAVE EATING 4 WHEN UR AT HOME PEOPLE!

Why not,

Just eat at red lights. That way you're stopped and not being dangerous. Thats how I have done it in the past.

Kel,

All of you are taking this pole the wrong way, ever heard the saying knowledge is power. The safe you are the safer we all are. It's not a sin, but it is safer to just pay attention while driving. Hand free sets and power bars will help all that can't do without. Have a blessed day and be safe.

whatever,

i think you guys are all over exaggerating! yes eating is a dangerous habit but you guys act as if its like the worst thing in the world and everyone who eats in their car is like a huge sinner! give it a rest and just chill out!

DK,

Sorry Brad. Disagree. My car (BMW 325i) does have cupholders in the front, but none in the back. The salesman told me Germans don't believe in drinking coffee and driving, but then why the cupholders in front.
The reality is that the 325i is a sportscar disguised as a sedan. It has no place to put a cell phone, no place to put CDs, a small glove compartment. "Put the food down, cell phone off and drive" is a bit simple. We eat and phone in our cars and we should do it safely, but it's a reality and there are all kinds of benefits. For example, phoning ahead to re-schedule takes away a lot driving stress and improves both safety and traffic flow. The cell phone allows me to get traffic info from other drivers and to avoid unnecessary driving.
The 325i is a very nice car to drive but its designed to do a kind of driving that is both unnecessary and illegal on public roads.
A driver with any serious skill and knowhow will NEVER even come close to using all that handling capability.

Brad,

German cars have lost sales in the US because they did not have cup holders. We shouldn't have anything in our cars! Just put the food down, cell phone off and drive!

angie,

dont eat to much donats or else u will die and swirve

AlyKat,

i do think it's a little dangerous to eat while driving but this isn't about that. i have a friend who does the knee driving-look no hands thing he says it's no biggy but i think other wise i mean he could get in a serious car accident i love him and i don't want him to get hurt!! i just hope that if i show him this he might do it a little less!!

Look at both sides,

I eat and drive and although it is probably a little dangerous, it's no mo dangerous than talking while your driving. Some people can't afford to sit down at home and eat, some people work 12 hours and go to school for 5 after that. Leaving little time to sit down and have a meal.

Right,

Yeah yeah yeah....let's make another law to help the nanny state/big brother force us to do something else that is pc....give me a break.

you just lost,

Holy crapola I mean seriously! mutated chickens should have the same rights as everyone else! I have seen enough roadkill chickens to know that if their brother was not being eaten on the road, they probably would have survived into the second lane!

Heather mae,

wow.... i completely agree eating should be a home activity and not something you do in a car. I know alot of people who eat and drive...it's stupid and irresponcible.!!!!

whatever,

ya...i think driving & eating is a serious problem...but driving and talking on cell phones is a much bigger problem.

Jessica,

That's so selfish, what if somthing goes wrong? they could seriously hurt other people.

Jill,

People should eat at home........

Bill,

I hate people who eat in their cars

Eric,

Is that English? Sounds like you are typing and eating.

rebecca,

THIS IS SO TRUE!!!! FOOD IS NOT MEANT TO BE EATEN WHILE DRIVING! YOUL B EVEN MORE HUNGRYER WHEN YOU EAT AND DRIVE BEC U WNT BE LOOKING AT THE FODD>>>>>


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