Bad news for those comforted by laws that restrict cell phone use while driving: it’s not the technology causing the problems, it’s the aggressive, bad drivers, a new report
from MIT suggests.
The Boston Globe reports:
People who chat behind the wheel often drive more aggressively even after they hang up, according to a study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
“The people who are more willing to frequently engage in cellphone use are higher-risk drivers, independent of the phone,” Continue reading
(Mike "Dakinewavamon" Kline/flickr)
Making calls while you’re driving is bad — we know this. But new research suggests that even thinking
about cell phone calls when you’re driving can lead to accidents.
This distressing new research that underscores how profoundly distracting cell phone use (even anticipated use) can be was presented this week as part of the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting held in Boston. Here’s the news release:
New research…shows that even anticipating calls or messages may distract drivers, increasing the risk of a crash.
Jennifer M. Whitehill, PhD, postdoctoral fellow at Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center at the University of Washington, and her colleagues sought to determine whether compulsive cell phone use is associated with motor vehicle crashes. They enlisted undergraduate students to complete the Cell Phone Overuse Scale (CPOS), a 24-item instrument that assesses four aspects of problematic cell phone use: 1) frequent anticipation of calls/messages, 2) interference with normal activities (e.g., impacting friends/family), 3) a strong emotional reaction to the cell phone and 4) recognizing problem use.
A while back, The New York Times published a nifty little interactive game to determine how hopelessly distracted we can be when we’re texting while driving. (I failed miserably, with a much slower reaction and double the number of missed gates while I was texting.)
So, in commemoration of Massachusetts’ new statewide ban on text-driving — a law that police say they will enforce vigorously — here’s the online game for you to check out. Hopefully it will help you take the texting ban to heart.