Survey Says New In-Car Gadets Can Be Useful but Dangerous
Distracted driving is a general description of what happens when motorists don’t pay attention behind the wheel. It’s not just smartphones that lead people astray.
A survey by AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety studies the information and entertainment systems that come with the newer vehicles. Marilyn Buskohl of AAA South Dakota said that "the subjects were scored on how much screen time was used to work the system".
“What they found was that the most advanced systems are really very difficult for drivers to use. They’re visually distracted and their mind is not engaged in the business of driving.”
Of the 30 vehicles that were tested Buskohl said none of the new rides tested in the low or acceptable range of distraction.
“The highest distraction comes from using the navigation systems, the touch screen in your vehicle and options where you can voice-activated text. That’s from the very high distraction (category). The moderate distraction were tuning your radio or calling and dialing someone.”
Buskohl also admitted many times people assume that because these options are available they are safe to use while driving, but that is not the case.
The hope is that automakers will continue to improve how driver and information systems mesh with each other so that full focus is placed on the road.