- New Mexico, New Jersey and Washington have the most distracted drivers.
- Mississippi, Oregon and Nevada have the least distracted.
- Distracted driving is on the decline from 2013 to 2017.
- 15,546 fatal distracted driving fatalities from 2013 to 2017.
Distracted driving has become what some would refer to as an epidemic. The advent of smartphones in recent years only compounds drivers' level of distraction. But distracted driving by use of phones and other hand-held devices is a fairly new occurrence. In 2001, New York became the first state to institute a ban on using hand-held cell phones while driving. Since then, most states have followed suit with cell phone bans and penalties for use of cell phones while driving.
However, bans on cell phones and penalties can only do so much in the deterrence of distracted driving. Mississippi, the least distracted state in our study has a partial ban, with no penalties, on cell phones. New Mexico, the most distracted state in our study, also has a partial ban with no penalties. The good news is that distracted driving is on the decline: distracted driving fatalities accounted for 6.22% of all driving fatalities in 2013, and in 2017, that number was down to 5.3%.
Public awareness campaigns have been a common voice to the dangers of distracted driving. It Can Wait, sponsored by cell phone service provider AT&T, and other campaigns sponsored by cell phone providers speak the loudest. Technology has become a solution in recent years. Not only with hands-free talk and text but also with iPhone and Android operating systems offering solutions to prevent incoming calls and text messages, keeping incoming distractions off of phones.
QuoteWizard analyzed National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) fatality data to find which states had the highest rate of distracted driving fatalities. We took a total number of distracted driving fatalities in each state over the period of 2013 to 2017 and ranked states on the number of distracted driving car crashes as a percentage of total fatal car crashes. States are ranked from 1 being the most distracted to 50 being the least distracted.
Most distracted driving states
|Rank||State||Distracted fatalities||Total fatalities||% Distracted fatality|
QuoteWizard analyzed NHTSA fatality data to find which states had the highest rate of distracted driving fatalities. We took a total number of distracted driving fatalities in each state over the period of 2013 to 2017 and ranked states on the number of distracted driving car crashes as a percentage of total fatal car crashes. States are ranked from 1 being the most distracted to 50 being the least distracted.