(ISTACA, Ill.) – A new study has found that one in five Fortune 500 companies has banned cell phone use while driving on company time. The National Safety Council, which conducted the survey, found that cell phones are a factor in 23 percent of motor vehicle accidents every year.
“In January 2009, NSC called for a ban on all cell phone use while driving because research identified the behavior as dangerous. A driver is four times as likely to crash while talking on a cell phone while driving,” said Janet Froetscher, president and CEO of the Council. “Now, in 2011, our call to action is getting results, and our nation’s top employers are taking steps to protect their employees and communities in which they operate by implementing total cell phone bans.”
The study also found that companies with locations in more than one state applied the ban, regardless of the laws on the books in a particular state.
Although some bans had been in place since only 2008, the NSC said restrictions were able to be measured. While 19 percent of responding companies said productivity increased with the ban, 22 percent said it remained the same.
Of companies that responded to the survey and do not have a policy banning cell phone use while driving, 35 percent have plans to implement one within the next 12 months, the NSC says.
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio