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O'Donnell Insurance Services | Blog | Texting while driving can affect your auto insurance ratesPhoto by Lord Jim

It’s true…driving can be boring. And if you are like most of us, you might be tempted to text and drive, especially when you’re gridlocked on Pleasant Valley Road during the rush hour. What’s one little text while you’re stuck in a sea of brake lights?

Effective January 1, 2009, the Wireless Communications Device Law made it illegal to text and drive in California. If an officer sees you doing it, you can get a ticket for distracted driving. This violation could affect your auto insurance rate.

Even worse than a rate increase, the policy could be canceled if there have been multiple tickets, or if you cause an accident while texting and driving. New insurance companies will see this cancellation as a risk factor, which will result in an even higher rate.

Even worse than a rate increase, the policy could be canceled if there have been multiple tickets, or if you causes an accident while texting and driving. New insurance companies will see this cancellation as a risk factor, which will result in an even higher rate.

Insurers raise rates on those with texting violations because of the risk factor involved. According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), using your cell phone while you drive makes you four times more likely to cause a car accident.

The NHTSA also reports that use of a mobile device while driving is like being just at the legal limit for drinking and driving.

Texting while driving can affect more than your car insurance. If you actually hurt someone, you can face criminal charges. This was the case for Aaron Deveau, an 18-year-old in Massachusetts who killed one man and seriously injured another last year while texting and driving.

He was sentenced on June 6 to one year in prison for vehicular homicide, texting while driving and negligent operation of a motor vehicle.

a 2009 New York Times survey, more than half of those polled think that texting and driving should be treated as seriously as drunk driving. A full 97% said that they think texting while driving shouldn’t be legal.

If legislation catches up with popular opinion, the practice could become as expensive and harmful as getting a DUI.

O'Donnell Insurance Services provides personal and business insurance to California residents. If you are in Sacramento, Folsom, El Dorado Hills, Cameron Park, or Placerville, get a homeowners insurance quote today!