Technology distracts today’s drivers

Published 7:00 am Friday, May 22, 2015

There are several distractions that can pose a danger to drivers such as adjusting the radio, putting on makeup or talking on the phone.
But now people are said to be checking their social media feed, email and browsing the Internet, all while operating a motor vehicle.
Research conducted by AT&T reports that drivers are now using smartphones to do all of those activities while driving.
Drivers are also reported to have been checking email, taking selfies, recording video, checking their social media feed and even video chatting while their vehicle is in motion.
Conducting any one of these activities while driving is a recipe for disaster. Any amount of time the driver’s eyes are not fixated on the road is a period when the unexpected can occur.
The research found 74 percent of smartphone users used their device for any or all of the reasons listed above. The predominant reason was to send a text or read and compose emails.
Another alarming find was that 30 percent of drivers were posting to Twitter, all of the time.
Any one of these activities while driving is dangerous. Video chatting would take the driver’s eyes off the road for a long period of time. Composing or reading an email involves a lot of concentration, leading to the driver becoming unaware of what’s going on around their vehicle.
In an effort to educate drivers about their unsafe smartphone usage the cellphone company is partnering with social media sites. The effort will utilize virtual reality technology to get their point across. Also, the company offers an app that will silence all notifications while the vehicle is in motion.
The problem is that drivers don’t seem to be listening. In spite of all of the news coverage, billboards and Internet posts, drivers can still be seen traversing the asphalt with their eyes on their phone instead of the road.

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