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Most admit being distracted behind the wheel

Monday - 12/5/2011, 8:56am  ET

Adam Tuss, wtop.com

WASHINGTON -- Texting, eating or drinking, putting on makeup, fumbling around with a GPS device. Chances are you have engaged in some of that distracting activity while behind the wheel.

A new Harris Interactive/Health Day poll breaks down the numbers even further.

According to the poll, published in USA TODAY, adults who drive on a regular basis admit they do the following:

  • Eat/drink (86 percent)
  • Talk on a non-hands-free cellphone (59 percent)
  • Set a GPS device (41 percent)
  • Text (37 percent)
  • Apply makeup (14 percent)

What may be more troublesome is that large minorities of the drivers in this survey also admitted to driving while less than fully alert.

From the survey:

A quarter of respondents said they have driven after having two or more drinks, and 44 percent said they've felt sleepy while driving, "sometimes even momentarily dozing off." Smaller percentages (7 and 12 percent, respectively) said they drive this way "sometimes or often."

The poll surveyed more than 2,800 U.S. adults between Nov. 10 to 14.

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(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)