Home Menu Search

Mobile phone dangers highlighted

24 November 2015

A new report confirms the dangers of ‘multi-tasking’ while driving, and identifies texting and talking on a mobile phone as the ‘most dangerous of driving multi-tasks’.

‘The battle for attention’, jointly produced by Dr Neale Kinnear and Dr Alan Stevens from RoadSafe partner the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL), and Neil Greig from RoadSafe partner the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM), examines a range of distractions.

As the ‘connected car’ becomes a reality it is vital to ensure that the plethora of new features on our cars make a positive contribution to the reduction in death and injury. Human error remains the biggest cause of crashes and technology has to work with the grain of people’s lives and abilities if it is to truly enhance our safety performance. The completely driverless car is still some way off and in the meantime new technology continues to run well ahead of any attempts by regulators to catch up. This report from the experts at TRL summarises what we know about distraction and concludes by posing some key questions for safety experts.

Dr Kinnear, who is a principal psychologist in the study of human behaviour and transport, and Dr Stevens, who is chief scientist and research director with internationally recognised expertise in ‘Human-Machine Interaction’, both reviewed existing research behind in-car distractions to understand the various cognitive processes and complexities in driving. Their research focuses on the dangers involved when drivers try and engage in more than one task, with results confirming it can have a ‘detrimental’ effect on the quality and accuracy of driving performance. Looking at the five key areas of distraction - cognitive, visual, auditory, manual and exposure time - the research shows that texting engages three of these to a ‘high’ level – cognitive, visual and manual. A mobile phone conversation also engages three of five areas of distraction to a ‘high’ level – cognitive, audible and exposure time.

 

 

 

 

Related news, events and information

No such thing as safe texting on the road, proves RAC Foundation

21 October 2008 – Texting behind the wheel impairs driving skills more than being drunk or under the influence of drugs,...

Increased autonomy sparks distracted driving warning for business drivers

12 February 2019 – Story from Fleet News. Businesses need to urgently tackle the issue of distracted drivers and overhaul their...

Driver distraction: an increasing factor in road crashes

23 March 2016 – Driver distraction has been a growing phenomenon in recent years and it is becoming a major contributing factor...

Hands Free remains a danger

22 July 2018 – Highlighted on the Road Safety Knowledge Centre is a paper which explains that a hands-free mobile phone at the...

Motorists warned of the dangers of texting at the wheel

1 May 2009 – The dangers of texting while driving are highlighted in a new hard-hitting THINK! campaign launched today after...

Teenage drivers blocked from texting

12 January 2009 – Reckless teenagers who use their mobile phones to send texts while driving could soon find Big Brother, or...

New study highlights the dangers of distraction for young drivers

23 January 2017 – Story from Fleet News. Nearly a quarter (23%) of young drivers have had an accident or near miss in the last...

The National Road Safety Conference confirms latest presentation

24 September 2014 – Tyron Louw, a PhD student at the Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds, will present part of a...

New warning over hands-free mobile phone use

18 March 2009 – Driver reaction times, such as the time taken to apply the brakes or steer away from danger, are significantly...