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New York motorists rank 8th in taking selfies while driving

Congratulations New York State motorists for achieving a dubious distinction.

You rank eighth in the country when it comes to taking selfies behind the wheel, according to a report released Monday by the Auto Insurance Center.

The finding was based on a review of 70,000 Instagram posts with driving-related hash tags.

At any daylight moment, 660,000 people across the country use cell phones while they drive. But up until now those drivers were talking, texting or playing games.

Now they’re taking their own photos and uploading them on social media. Nearly four in 10 drivers who use smartphones are checking social media apps while driving.

California drivers are the worst, sharing 2.5 posts for every 100,000 residents. They are followed by drivers in Nevada, Florida and Hawaii – all vacation destinations.

Researchers have coined a term to describe the phenomena: “inattention blindness,” a condition where drivers fail to truly see some of the environment around them, even when they do look up.

New York is one of only 14 states – plus Washington, D.C. – to ban cell phone use by drivers, reported the Auto Insurance Center.

Taking photos may the ultimate in dangerous activities for drivers – especially when that photo is of yourself. Selfies take a driver’s eyes off the road for at least two seconds – during which time a vehicle travels 176 feet at 60 mph.

email jkwiatkowski@buffnews.com

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