Study links failure to use turn signals to distracted driving

May 9, 2012

Dayton, OH – U.S. drivers fail to use their turn signal a total of 750 billion times a year – 2 billion a day – according to a study from the Society of Automotive Engineers.

Researchers analyzed about 12,000 instances of vehicles turning or changing lanes over a 23-month period and found that drivers failed to use their turn signal nearly half the time when changing lanes and one-fourth of the time when making a turn. Researcher Richard Ponziani, president of RLP Engineering, suggested vehicle manufacturers install or incorporate “smart turn signal” systems into vehicles that can automatically activate based on wheel movements.

Failing to use turn signals causes approximately 2 million crashes annually – twice as many as caused by distracted driving – based on data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the study concluded.