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Posted on Wed, Dec 14, 2011 : 4:56 p.m.

Analysis: Cellphone crashes total more than 9,000 in past decade in Michigan

By Staff

More than 9,000 traffic crashes in Michigan involved cellphone use in the past decade, an analysis by shows, and experts believe the number is even higher.

Such crashes are at the center of a nationwide ban being sought by a federal safety agency on all phone usage by motorists, except in emergencies, the report said.

The analysis of Michigan State Police traffic crash data found that at least 800 crashes per year involved cellphone use since 2001. The data does not distinguish between phone conversations and text messaging, the story said.

Read the full report.


Macabre Sunset

Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 7:36 p.m.

It is safer to drive drunk than to drive while talking on a cell phone - whether it's "hands-free" or not. That much has been made clear by those who study the issue.

Dog Guy

Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 4:08 p.m.

Multitasking is a myth. You can't do two things at once . . . and one of them is driving.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:26 p.m.

I am reminded here of all the reasons why we don't text and drive and why cell phone usage by the TD wants a complete ban. I am reminded of a time when a Pioneer High School student had dropped her phone and guess what she hit? A school bus from behind. Yup. She nailed it head on. Luckily for her she walked. I am reminded of a time when a school bus in Tennessee went off a bridge. Why? The bus driver was talking on his cell. Bus drivers and truck drivers are prohibited by law to use these things while driving. It is scary business to be doing all of these things and talking at the same time. Unless you can? I don't suggest it. I am all for this ban. Good luck FSA getting this thing passed. Although I do see some serious money for anyone who wants to make it for their city or town.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:22 p.m.

Traffic safety statistics are subject to all kinds of debate. I for one believe the root cause of many accdents / deaths is poor driver training. We turn out drivers educated in the academics of driving & the law. We think taking a test about the rules & regulations will make safe drivers. I'd rather see a speeding driver cutting in and out lanes with a 50,000 miles of experience under their belt then a safe driving gaduate following the rules and tying up traffic. Humans have not learned how to elminate frustration. Issuing rules to control behaivior has proved not be affective. Cell phones should not be used while driving. Cell phones should not be used for directions if the system can't find the voise activated mode. Good luck on banning that behavior.

Holy Cow

Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 2:17 a.m.

Those 9000 crashes are just the ones that are known about. I have a feeling that the number is far greater. My husband's car was totaled by someone going 45 mph by the EMU stadium. She never braked at all so I have a feeling she was using her cell phone and had her head down. Traffic had been stopped by a crossing guard to allow people to cross to the stadium from a parking lot. My husband was third in line and cushioned the blow otherwise she would have plowed into a large group of people crossing and probably would have killed several of them. When you get behind the wheel of a car you are wielding a two ton bullet. Please don't be careless with it.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:14 p.m.

Mike, we have a right not to be killed because someone had to text while driving.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 2:07 p.m.

Maybe she was looking out the window or dropped something on the floor. Please don't infringe upon the rights of most of us.............

Huron 74

Wed, Dec 14, 2011 : 10:39 p.m.

All cell phone use except using hands-free equipment should be banded while driving. Other people's safety should be the only thing in your hands. No call or message is more important. When you have had painful injuries from an auto accident caused by a negligent driver, as I have had recently, you know everybody should have their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel at all times. Enough things can go wrong without monkeying around with cell phones.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:16 p.m.

I should clarify, near accidents as in someone tried to merge into me. Not surprising, as Michigan has many merge areas on the highways. I also got rear ended at a light on Metro Parkway (in Sterling Heights) by someone on their cell phone.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:14 p.m.

Cancer happens, so medical science develops therapies to fight cancer. And from 1977 to 2007 survival rates for cancer doubled. Airplane and train accidents happen, so the NTSB investigates them, determines their root causes, and addresses them via recommendations and regulations. And these modes of travel are incredibly safe these days. Fortunately the ills of the world are not left to the fatalistic among us....


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:13 p.m.

Mike, I have had so many near accidents (I have a long commute, so that figures in), and I look over to see who was trying to merge into my lane and on top of me - the person is gabbing away on their phone or looking down into their lap! I really don't want to die on the road, or have other people die, because someone couldn't wait to text. Shouldn't human life be held above that? Texting is a whole other animal, it takes up ALL of one's attention. Not good or fair. One of many instances: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 2:06 p.m.

Life happens, accidents happen, stupidity happens, cancer happens, you can get hit by lightning. Let's outlaw all of those too!


Wed, Dec 14, 2011 : 10:21 p.m.

Texting and talking (with hands) while driving needs to be outlawed in Michigan, as it is in states like NY. It won't completely solve the problem to do so, but it'll help.


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 3:08 p.m.

@Mike, so does eating, changing the radio station... do what? I'm not sure what your reply means. I thought this article was referring to the crash stats specifically related to cell phone use, a newish thing in the last decade. A ban would still allow someone to pull off to the side of the road to do phone business (what we did before cell phones came along and had to use pay phones), or use the phone while driving in an emergency. I'll add applying make-up and reading books (I've heard some drivers do this!) to your list though :)


Thu, Dec 15, 2011 : 2:05 p.m.

So does eating, changing the radio station, talking to someone in the back seat, looking out the side windows, yelling at your kids, smoking, drinking coffee, etc.