Reviewing Four Decades of Cell Phone Use while Driving Literature (1970-2010): An Emphasis on Texting Behaviors, Parental Perceptions, and Methods of Control Academic Article uri icon


  • Background: Cell phone use while driving is identified as a contributing factor in a growing number of vehicular crashes. As the technology becomes more mainstream and users become more technologically dependent the need to reduce distraction-related risk while operating a motor vehicle also increases. Objective: To inventory and organize the peer-reviewed literature related to cell phone use while driving in terms of the effectiveness of various control efforts and to identify shifts in research focus from risk evaluation to intervention and reduction. Methods: A thorough review of the peer-reviewed literature was conducted to retrieve empirical articles that addressed cell phone use behaviors while driving. A matrix was constructed to determine the quantity, quality, and characteristics of 74 research studies conducted between 1970 and 2010 pertaining to cell phone use and texting behaviors. Results: A synthesis of these empirical articles revealed an emerging literature related to text messaging while driving behaviors and limited information focusing on methods of control. Conclusions: Amid growing trends of cell phone use and text messaging while driving in the United States, further research is needed to fill literature gaps pertaining to appropriate strategies and techniques to minimize risky behaviors in an increasingly technology-reliant population.

published proceedings

  • Health Behaviour and Public Health

author list (cited authors)

  • Benden, M. E., Smith, M. L., Henry, M., & Congleton, J. J.

complete list of authors

  • Benden, ME||Smith, ML||Henry, M||Congleton, JJ

publication date

  • January 1, 2012 11:11 AM