Teen shares how distracted driving took her independence - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Teen shares how distracted driving took her independence

By Sara Story - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - It is an age old debate: Who is better behind the wheel: Men or women?A new study shows the riskiest group of drivers are teenage girls.

Aggression, speeding, and texting while driving are rising among teen girls, while falling among teen boys.

East Texas teen, Meagan Long, says she almost lost her life because of distracted driving. Two years ago, at age 18, Long says she was driving and playing with the radio. She swerved off the road and her car flipped several times.

"I couldn't feed myself," said Long. "I couldn't talk. I couldn't walk. I couldn't do anything."

It was an accident that took her independence, and Long says she is lucky to be alive.

"Car crashes remain the number one killer of American teens," said Kyle Deshazo, an Allstate Insurance agent.

Deshazo says teen crashes are usually caused by distracted, risky driving. A study done by the Allstate Foundation found 27% of teen girls admit to speeding 10 miles over the speed limit - compared to 19% of teen boys. 25% of girls admitted to reading or writing text messages and emails while driving. 15% of boys admitted to this.

"The young ladies have become more aggressive in the driving," said Deshazo. "A lot of claim activity has trended towards young ladies driving."

"No, now that doesn't surprise me," said Lela Maple, a mom. "I have two daughters and a son and they were a little bit more riskier than my son."

"I just took chances," said Long.

They are chances some East Texas boys, who were busy on their cell phones, said weren't worth taking behind the wheel.

"You are taking your eyes off the road and looking at the phone," said Cole Moon, a teen driver. "Can you not wait until you get to a stoplight?"

Whatever the distraction, Long says put it aside.

"Don't ever think it couldn't happen to you because it really could," she said.

She says she is living proof. Long can walk now. She says she is working hard on getting her driver's license back.

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