A recent study by AAA was released and shows that hands free devices may not be as safe as many people think. Distracted driving has become a huge issue with texting while driving, taking phone calls in the car and many other distractions. These types of accidents have become a normal thing for a Las Vegas auto accident attorney to deal with on a regular basis.
Distracted driving is an epidemic in the United States. With new technology coming out just about every month, more drivers are on their cell phones or using navigational systems than ever before. This can increase the chances of an accident exponentially and it’s against the law in nearly every state.
Most drivers believe the solution to distracted driving is a hands free device and voice recognition software. This may seem like a great idea, but a new study done by AAA shows this may not be true.
Many companies have started to market hands free devices and voice command software to all drivers, especially younger demographics. They are saying these devices are a safer alternative to a hand held device. In fact, many car manufacturers have started to include hands free dashboard technology in all of their vehicles.
The AAA Study
The data found in a recent AAA study showed that hands free devices with voice commands for text and email may actually be more distracting for the driver. This is due to the higher level of concentration necessary to make sure the email or text is transcribed properly. When drivers use this type of technology, they tend to develop “tunnel vision” or “inattention blindness.”
Many police accident investigators have started adding the comment “looked, but did not see” to the report. This used to confuse safety officials, but research has shown that it means tunnel vision or inattention blindness was a part of the accident.
Rising rate of new technology in vehicles
With about 9 million vehicles on the road featuring some type of infotainment technology system, distracted driving is certainly a serious issue. Many officials believe the number will increase to more than 60 million of these vehicles by 2018. AAA officials have briefed automakers and they want to limit vehicles made with voice command software, hands free devices and infotainment systems.
AAA wants vehicles to be limited to just the core driving options necessary as features on the vehicle. The National Safety Council has also joined the debate and has asked policymakers to reconsider entertainment and communication technology on future vehicle models.
Distracted driving is a problem and a hands free device isn’t the solution. When you’re on the road, put the phone away and only use a navigation system when you have a passenger to run it for you. This will help keep you safer and less distracted on the highway.