Texting Behind the Wheel Increases the Possibility of an Accident by Six Times

Apr 22, 2019 12:00:00 AM

Texting Behind the Wheel Increases the Possibility of an Accident by Six Times

Every day we are more aware about the dangers that using a cell phone while driving and participating in actions such as a phone call or a text message bring. However, the cell phone is not the only (and dangerous) source of distraction. The infotainment systems that incorporate modern vehicles also distract in driving.

Distractions behind the wheel: Programing the navigating system is as dangerous as texting.

The American Automobile Association (AAA), among other associations, has warned about the danger posed by the increase in technology included in the new car models. The new models come with bigger screens, more buttons and more functionalities.

For the AAA, this ‘technological overexposure’ does nothing except distract the driver from what is important, the road. Even with hands-free and voice commands to perform various functions, a study has shown that there are tasks that worryingly distract drivers.

The new models allow the driver several actions such as check e-mail, send messages or check social networks from the vehicle, apart from control vehicle functions such as heating or air conditioning, among others.

The problem is that human beings are sensitive to external stimuli and can be easily distracted. This means that if there is something external to driving that is claiming our attention (like a text message or browser prompt), it is very likely that we will ‘disconnect’ a few seconds from the main task which is driving.

With this in mind, the AAA, conducted a study to warn of the use of these new technologies behind the wheel. The objective of the study was to learn the visual and cognitive demand and the time that the drivers dedicated to tasks such as sending a text message, tuning the radio or entering an address in the navigator.

For this, they tested 30 new models with this technology.

The results are quite significant.

-One of the most striking is that programming the navigating system is the most dangerous task we can do while we are driving. That is because we need to spend an average of 40 seconds to complete this task. Forty seconds in which our attention is not placed where it should, so we run the risk of suffering an accident.

-Tuning the radio (even though it is not recommended while moving) is the least dangerous task of the studied models.

-Making calls or dialing numbers is more dangerous than tuning the radio.

-Of the models studied, the Tesla Model S 75 and the Ford Mustang GT turned out to be the most demanding for attention, and therefore the most dangerous.

For this reason, from CarSync we recommend that, if you must use the navigation system, you program it before starting to move to avoid distractions. Happy driving!