According to the latest data from the Road Safety Monitor 2019 (RSM) report published by The Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) in partnership with Beer Canada and Desjardins, there is a concerning increase in the percentage of drivers reporting texting and driving in Canada.
The report shows almost 1 in 10 Canadian drivers (9.7%) reporting texting while driving in 2019, representing a 2.5% increase from the previous year and a 102% increase compared to 2010. Talking on a handheld device while driving also increased to 11.7% from 9.3% in 2018, however, talking on a hands-free device decreased from 36.5% to 32%.
The report also found that age was a significant factor in the likelihood of driving while distracted. For every 10-year increase in age, drivers were 44% less likely to text.
“While age and sex may be stable predictors of distracted driving, when considering the estimated numbers of Canadian drivers engaging in the behaviour, it is clear distracted driving is common regardless of age and sex,” adds Craig Lyon, Senior Research Scientist at TIRF. “This means the demographic least likely to engage in texting and driving (i.e., females aged 45 and older) still accounted for an estimated 172,309 drivers on our roads.”
The data is based on the RSM, an annual public opinion poll developed and conducted by TIRF. The full fact sheet is available at this link.