Many states recognize the dangers of using handheld phones, as seen in
the rise in hand-held cellphone bans for drivers nationwide. Some state,
such as California, have gone as far as banning use of their phone at
all while driving – including swiping, scrolling, texting, and having
the phone in one’s hand.
This trend has naturally led to the popularity of hands-free driving, where
drivers would use devices such as headsets while they are driving. Many
are also utilizing voice-activated functions on their smartphones to text.
But is hands-free driving – to talk on the phone or text - really safe?
Hands-Free Talking Is a Deadly Distraction
According to researchers, the answer is no. Many of us assume that hands-free
driving is safer, but in reality, it is just as dangerous as if you are
using a hand-held phone. Experts who conducted the research found that
drivers who engaged in conversations while driving (with or without a
hand-held phone) drove erratically and had a greater likelihood of rear-ending
the vehicle in front of them.
The reason for this is because many drivers are concentrating on the conversation
– visually and cognitively – which takes away from their ability
to focus on the road.
Studies show that drivers who drive while talking on the phone tend to:
- Hit the brakes more abruptly and more often
- Divert cognitive attention away from the road
- Have slower reaction times
- Focus their eyes on a small section of the road in front of them
- Miss seeing hazards in their windshields and mirrors
Although the science has come out and shown how dangerous hands-free driving
is, many drivers are still unaware of the dangers. Hands-free devices
are more popular than ever, despite warnings from experts.
Tips for Safe Driving – Put Away the Distractions
- Before you start the car, know your itinerary and routes – set up
your navigation apps before driving off
- Do your best to avoid talking or texting while driving
- Use your cellphone for emergencies only
- If you need to make a call, pull over to the shoulder.
- Minimize social conversations with passengers
- Take care of personal grooming before you step in your car.
- If you have pets, properly secure them first before driving
- Avoid multi-tasking while driving
Accidents caused by
distracted driving are on the rise, despite cars being safer and more drivers using hands-free
devices. If you or a loved one has been injured by a distracted driver,
contact Mainetti, Mainetti & O’Connor and have our
Kingston car accident lawyers guide you through the claims process. We have a proven record of obtaining
outstanding results for our clients, and we are prepared to help you fight
for your right to fair compensation. Start today with a free consultation.
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