In honor of Distracted Driving Awareness Month, our law office is sharing the various myths surrounding multitasking while driving. Many do not realize that multitasking, what they may think is a valuable tool, is actually putting themselves and others in danger on the roadway.
The National Safety Council has shared an infographic that explains the myths of multitasking and the statistics surrounding it.
Multitasking Causes Accidents
A survey taken in 2012 by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that more than two in three drivers reported talking on their cell phone while behind the wheel at least once in the past 30 days. Those drivers, who do talk on the phone while driving, whether on a hands-free or hand-held device, are four times more likely to be involved in a crash.
Of those surveyed, nearly one in three said that they use their cell phones “fairly often” or “regularly.” As you can imagine, this increases the risk of car accidents occurring which often result in property damage, which the average cost of in 2011 was $9,100, as well as injuries.
Cell phone use while driving is a habit that many drivers have contracted the past few years due to the adoption of smart phones. The problem with phones is not only texting while driving, but simply having conversations with others. When an individual is having a conversation on the phone, or with another individual in the vehicle, they become distracted and are not fully focused on the task of operating their vehicle.
Cell phone use is a distraction to the brain. As the NSC’s infographic explains, activity in the area of the brain that processes movement of visual images and is important to safe driving, the parietal lobe, is affected. According to a study by Carnegie Mellon University, activity of the parietal love decreases by as much as 37% when listening to language.
Preventing Distracted Driving
We continue to share statistics and tips surrounding this issue with our readers in the hope that we help to spread awareness and reduce the potential for accidents on the area roadways. We urge our readers to visit the National Safety Council website to see the materials they are offering during Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and to see "The Great Multitasking Lie" infographic for more insight into the effects of cell phone use while driving.