Large spike in fatal crashes blamed on drivers using apps

Updated:

New numbers show that drivers looking at their cellphones are leading to more fatal crashes.

Experts say a spike in fatal collisions is likely because of smartphone apps.

The number of people killed last year was the highest since 2008. 

In the first half of 2015, there were 15,035 fatal crashes nationwide.

So far this year, the number has jumped another 10.4 percent to 17,775 fatal crashes.

Smartphone integration in cars that allow people to make calls and use navigation apps hands free has increased in recent years.  But experts say the proliferation of apps -- navigation, games and augmented reality apps -- are making the roads more dangerous.

Earlier this year during the Pokémon Go craze, police were having to tell drivers not to play while behind the wheel.

In the Snapchat app, there's a feature that allows drivers to post photos that record the speed of their vehicle.

The head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says distracted driving is a crisis that needs to be addressed. 

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