A new report suggests that texting whilst driving is, in fact, even more dangerous than driving whilst under the influence.

The RAC Foundation, and the Transport Research Laboratory, carried about the tests following on from a poll conducted through Facebook that took in 3000 drivers earlier this year.

It found that nearly half of drivers aged between 18- and 24-years-old texted while driving.

And the follow-up tests suggest that these drivers' average reaction times could be slowed by as much as 35%.

The team put 17-24-year-olds in a simulator and then got them to write or read texts whilst driving.

The results were shocking and blew away previous reports that had suggested that reactions were 21% slower among those who had taken cannabis and 12% slower among those who had drunk to the legal limit.

This latest report also found that the texters also drifted out of lanes more than normal drivers and also had less control of the steering wheel.

Dr Nick Reed, senior human factors researcher at TRL, told the BBC: "When texting, drivers are distracted by taking their hand off the wheel to use their phone, by trying to read small text on the phone display and by thinking about how to write their message".

"This combination of factors resulted in the impairments to reaction time and vehicle control that place the driver at a greater risk than having consumed alcohol to the legal limit for driving."