Even Boston Bruins goalie's catlike reflexes not fast enough to handle texting and driving

Insurance company aims to reduce texting and driving accidents

An insurance company has enlisted Boston Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas to help spread the word through a public service announcement about how bad an idea it is to text and drive simultaneously.

As Thomas, who led the Bruins to the Stanley Cup championship last season, says: "If a professional athlete with highly trained reflexes isn't quick enough to avoid [accidents while texting and driving] don't think you're special and you're going to be able to do it."

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Thomas is shown going through a high-tech driving simulator that the insurance company has been hitting the road with in a 36-foot-long rig so that new drivers can see first-hand how unadvisable it is to text and drive.

Researchers are putting loads of resources these days into addressing the issues of distracted driving (as we reported earlier today on an AT&T Labs/Carnegie Mellon effort involving a vibrating steering wheel) and also distracted walking.

Nearly 5,500 people were killed and almost half a million were injured in accidents related to distracted driving (including text messaging) in 2009, according to U.S. Department of Transportation figures cited by the insurance company.

Bob Brown tracks network research in his Alpha Doggs blog and Facebook page, as well on Twitter and Google +.

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Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.