New “infotainment” technology in vehicles is causing more drivers to become more distracted than ever before. Many believe hands-free devices and dashboard “infotainment” systems are safe because they are provided by vehicle manufacturers, but research shows these technologies lead to the same cognitive distraction and inattention blindness as a hand held device.
Nevertheless, because some state laws ban only handheld technology, many drivers honestly believe they are making the safe choice by using the car’s own hands-free screen. In fact, the manufacturer installed screen is as distracting to your brain as a handheld screen. Make no mistake: This multitasking technology is about convenience, not safety. It is up to each of us to ensure we are using the technology without endangering others on the road by inputting addresses into the car’s navigation system or loading a favorite play list before getting on the road.
According to the National Safety Council, distracted driving continues to be a public health issue and its getting worse. Recent NSC statistics indicate motor vehicle fatalities are up 6% from 2015. More than 40,000 people are killed on our nation’s roadways every year, and distracted driving is a major contributor to those deaths.
Each death is 100% preventable. From cell phones to dashboard infotainment systems to evolving voice command features – all pose a threat to our safety if we allow them to distract us. Just one second of your attention is all takes to change a life forever.
Distracted Driving Awareness Month in April is an effort to recognize and eliminate preventable deaths from distracted driving. Join the National Safety Council and Eugene Bruno & Associates to help save lives.