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Hankook: Texting remains a problem when driving

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Americans will be logging plenty of miles this fall, but their eyes may not be focused on the road in front of them, according to Hankook Tire America Corp.

Results from the Hankook Tire 2012 Fall Gauge Index reveal that despite many recent public service announcements and news articles on the dangers, drivers say texting is their number one distraction while on the road.

Generation Y is the biggest offender; 28% of respondents aged 18-35 stated that texting was their greatest distraction when driving, compared to 15% of respondents aged 35-54, and 7% those 55 and up.

In addition to texting, talking to other passengers (13%), talking on mobile phones (10%) and eating/drinking (7%) were noted as other distractors while on the road.

More than half (56%) of the Americans surveyed are planning to take a road trip this fall, with 84% of those road trippers driving 500 miles or more to reach their destinations. The number one single reason cited for fall travel? Thanksgiving (20%).

Adding to peoples’ mileage this fall is the back to school routine of shuttling kids to school, sports practices, and extracurricular activities. The good news: With school back in session, 37% of drivers say they’re more careful driving this time of year. And, 41% of those surveyed stated that they drive more carefully on Halloween when kids are out "trick or treating."

Tire maintenance habits

Drivers continue to take care of their tires. Sixty-one percent of Americans have checked their tire pressure in the past month. This is consistent with last year’s findings, which found 63% had done so. Ninety-seven percent agree that correct tire pressure keeps them safe and 94% agree that correct tire pressure saves them money.

The 2012 Hankook Tire Gauge Index is a quarterly survey of Americans that uncovers their attitudes and opinions about all things related to driving. The fall installment of the survey, conducted Aug. 22-23 by Vision Critical on behalf of Hankook Tire America, polled 1,010 randomly selected Americans on fall driving and what is on their minds as the season approaches.

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