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The dangers of live-streaming and driving

Did you know that sending or reading a text while driving takes your eyes off the road for about five seconds?

Remember when the phone was that clunky device that hung on the wall, and you could only travel so far before the call disconnected? Cell phones provide luxuries of talking and texting whomever whenever, quick access to social media, endless web surfing on the go, and the list goes on. Most Americans today can't go anywhere without their phones.

A few years ago, the number of people who texted or talked while driving saw a dramatic increase that raised significant concern as it became one of the leading causes of distracted driver-related accidents. Recently that number has decreased, but the trend of people who live-stream while driving is steadily increasing, according to State Farm's 2017 annual distracted driving survey.

Driving becomes even more impaired. Did you know that sending or reading a text while driving takes your eyes off the road for about five seconds? Imagine how long it takes you away when you're recording a video? You do the math.

Research shows that drivers become impacted in three ways when making videos. Their mind, eyes, and hands are no longer on the wheel and road. All attention has shifted to recording, posing, and thinking about how many likes they will get. A few seconds can cause a fender bender, but a few moments can take away lives. The videos can wait. Keep your eyes, hands, and minds on the road.

Break old habits. Most millennials don't see anything wrong with driving and live-streaming. Living on social media is the norm. Shouldn't it be okay to Snapchat and drive too? Of course not!

Interesting enough, State Farm's 2017 results showed that most reasons given for using phones while driving included, "needing to stay in touch, sharing something they see, and pure habit." As hard as it may be, drivers must break these habits. There are times and places for live-streaming videos; behind the wheel is not one of them. Put your phone in your purse or in your pocket. Turn the notification alarm down. Don't worry it will still be there when you reach your destination.

Use driver-friendly apps to cut distractions. It can be hard to put the phone down. Live-streaming is becoming more popular. The pressure to keep up with everyone is so high that you might feel like you're missing out if you don't post as often. Ten times out of ten, you're not missing anything.

However, should you need to be connected to your phone, check out some of these driver-friendly apps below.

LifeSaver blocks all texts and notifications so that the driver can stay focused on the road.

Drivesafe.ly is an auto-on function that reads caller names, texts, and emails aloud. It can be set to auto-respond so that drivers do not have to touch the phone during their time on the road.

Cellcontrol is a subscription-based service with an easy-to-install device. This app is every parents' best friend because it blocks the young driver's phone from receiving and sending messages. It also disables other features as long as the car is in motion. Parents will also receive a text alert if the device is moved.

Sinclair Broadcast Group is committed to keeping our viewers accident-free, which is why we initiated the Drive Safe campaign. Steer clear of danger with our monthly tips.