Driving while talking on a mobile


About ten years ago, everyone started to panic about the increased use of mobile phones while driving, because they seemed to be causing lots of accidents. The response was to ban the practice, which became illegal in 2003, unless you were using a handsfree set.

This was widely supported by the mobile phone industry who happily charged us lots of money to provide a variety of handsfree solutions, from simple holders to elaborate integrated in-car systems.

The problem is however, they don’t work. Driving while talking on a handsfree kit is just as dangerous as driving while holding the handset. Multiple studies have all supported the same conclusion.

It’s easy to see how this situation happened. You assume it is the act of holding the phone, so without testing it, you suggest it as an idea and phone manufacturers jump on it as an easy way to make more money from us. To further their own profits, they continue to push the idea that it is safer to drive using handsfree, even though it isn’t.

In fact, it turns out that it is the act of holding a conversation, which takes some of your attention away from the road, that reduces the safety. So it is irrelevant whether you’re holding the handset or not.

Worth thinking about, next time you take a call on your handsfree set.



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This entry was posted on Saturday, October 6th, 2012 at 11:23 am and is filed under Religion & Politics, Science. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.