A new social media craze has hit our roads in a bad way. Taking a ‘selfie’ photo behind the wheel and generally using a mobile whilst driving is on the rise.

Research by confused.com revealed that 1 in 4 motorists admit to taking ‘selfies’ while driving. The online survey revealed that 9% of 18-24 year-olds used Snapchat whilst driving.

Confused.com head of car insurance Gemma Stanbury said it was the duty of drivers to behave responsibly.

“Taking your eye off the road, just for a second, to read an alert or take a photo can have potentially fatal results”, she said.

“We’re aware that social media and photo sharing sites do not actively encourage users to take photos or post updates when driving, so the responsibility sits with the individual not to do so when behind the wheel.”

Confused.com also monitored Twitter over a 30 day period and found 287 tweets were tagged with #drivingselfie and #drivingselfies.

In response IAM director of policy and research Neil Greig said: “Research shows that it is simply not possible to use a mobile phone in any way whilst driving and stay safe no matter how confident you may be in your driving ability.”

He added: “This seems to be another form of peer pressure to take part in the latest trend and the best way to avoid it is to give young people the skills to stand up for themselves and not follow the herd and post silly photographs online.”

Celebrities such as Miley are seen to be encouraging the craze by posting their own driving ‘selfies’ on social media too.vibe-vixen-car-selfie

How do you deal with mobile phone safety in lessons?

I’ve posed the question on a Facebook group and many ADIs replied to say they ask their learners to turn their phones off during lessons. Alan Shirley said: “This is going to be a growing problem as new pupils will have had at least 10 years experience multi tasking with phones / tablets and will feel perfectly at home doing it while they drive.”

Share your thoughts and ideas on how to tackle this craze on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/hcdis