You may be surprised to learn that using a hands-free mobile device while driving isn’t much safer than talking on a hand-held device. New Jersey statistics show that between 2006 and 2008, drivers using hands-free phones were involved in 4,530 accidents, a number just 18% lower than people who crashed using hand-held mobile devices.
Why are hands-free mobile devices so dangerous? According to the National Safety Council (NSC), driver error—including distracted driving from using a mobile device—makes up 94% of all car accidents. Hands-free communication devices, such as bluetooth headsets, dashboard systems and dashboard mounts are still distractions that impair driving.
The NSC has identified three main types of driver distractions:
- Visual distractions cause drivers to take their eyes off the road.
- Manual distractions lead a driver to take one—or both—hands off the steering wheel.
- Cognitive distractions take away mental focus from driving.
Now imagine that you have a smartphone mounted on your dashboard. Your boss calls you, which means you have to take your eyes off the road (visual distraction) to answer the call (manual distraction). Once you start talking to them (cognitive distraction), you’ve completed the trifecta of distractions. This combination of distractions can be lethal on the road.
Even just one type of distraction, such as cognitive distraction, can result in an accident. The brain can quickly toggle between tasks, but it can’t do two things at the same time very well. The activity in the area of the brain that processes moving images, and is needed for safe driving, decreases by 1/3 when listening and talking on the phone.
Distracted driving has become a primary reason for car accidents, mostly due to smartphones and other mobile devices. If you have been injured in a car crash, contact our Pennsylvania car accident attorneys at Handler, Henning & Rosenberg LLP immediately. We can help you explore your legal options and fight for the financial recovery you need.Call (888) 498-3023 or contact us online for a free initial consultation.