More drivers try to send emails and update status messages while on the road, a study by the UK Transport Research Laboratory has found.

According to the study, commissioned by the RAC, motorists sending text messages while driving are "significantly more impaired" than ones who drive drunk. The study showed that reaction times among drivers who were texting deteriorated by 35 per cent. Steering ability fell in nine out of 10 drivers.

Drivers Using Smartphones More Dangerous than Drunks

Similar studies of drink-driving indicate that reaction times diminished by a relatively modest 12 percent. By that measure, "driving while texting" is three times more dangerous than drink-driving, said the study on itproportal.

In the US, the Centres for Disease Control says automobile accidents are the leading cause of death in women under the age of 35 and points out that 25 percent of phone users text while driving. In Europe 21 percent of Dutch drivers admitted using mobile phones while behind the wheel.

The use of cell phones at the wheel is putting lives in danger due to individual negligence, the study points out.

In its attempt to help drivers with a problem of texting while on the move, the CDC offers help on its website:

Texting puts drivers at serious risk