Two weeks ago we reported that distracted driving is up 10% in summer 2018. Memorial Day 2018 was up 3%. And we were waiting for July 4th this year to see what would happen. Well, the numbers are in – distracted driving was up this 4th of July.
Compared to 2017, texting and app use while driving jumped 7% on July 4, 2018. Drivers spent 10.8 minutes of every hour on the road typing and swiping their phones this year compared to 10.08 minutes last year. Hands-free calls also increased 9%. Handheld calls remained static at 1.2% of driving time.
People spent more time on the road this 4th of July as well, compounding the distracted driving problem. In 2018, the minutes per driver increased 6% to 54.7 minutes. The number of trips per driver rose 11%, from 2.7 to 3.0.
The difference in distracted driving on Memorial Day and July 4, 2018, is starker than 2017. In 2017, distraction increased less than 1% from Memorial Day to July 4. In 2018, that number climbed nearly 5%. In 2017, Labor Day was the least distracted holiday with 9.9 minutes of distraction per hour. We’ll see what happens this year.
Summer holidays still remain less distracted than typical summer weekdays, which have 11.1 minutes of every hour distracted. Summer is the most distracted season of the year, 8% higher than all other seasons.