Hands-free devices aren't safe, either
The National Safety Council found that driving while using hands-free cell phones is risky. It’s not about the device and how drivers operate them, it’s about the human brain. So how can mobile phones be reconciled with driver safety?
There’s a word for it: “inattention blindness,” caused by the cognitive distraction of a cell phone conversation. Indeed, drivers using hands-free phones (and of course also those using handheld phones) have a tendency to look at objects without seeing them.
Estimates by the Traffic Safety Coalition indicate that drivers using mobile phones look but fail to see up to 50% of the information in their driving environment.
Worryingly, four in ten drivers admit to having sent a text while driving. Half have read a text and six have talked on a hand-held phone while driving, according to research conducted by UFG Insurance.
That’s why UFG Insurance has drawn up 8 rules to include in a distracted driving policy. These are:
- Do not use your phone to have a conversation while driving
- Do not use your phone to text while driving
- Do not access your phone via a vehicle dashboard system while driving
- Do not use your phone to take a photo or capture video while driving
- Do not use your phone to check or post to social media accounts while driving
- Do not use your phone to check or send an email while driving
- Do not use your phone to programme a satnav app while driving
- Do not call or text another person if you know they may be driving
In short, don’t use your phone while driving and don’t call or text someone who may be driving.