New York drivers face many distractions any time they hit the road. Technology in cars is only one example. But it is one of the most prevalent examples. This is why companies rushed to find solutions to risky distracted driving. The result of this rush is hands-free technology. But how safe is this tech?
The National Safety Council points out that hands-free tech cannot guarantee driver safety. Their campaign slogan is “hands-free is not risk-free” for this reason. Some believe that hands-free tech takes care of all risks associated with distracted driving. In reality, it only takes care of two. The three risks of distracted driving center around:
- Keeping your eyes on the road
- Keeping your hands on the wheel
- Keeping your mind on the task at hand
It is true that hands-free tech helps with the first two. If you do not have to manually operate a device, you can keep your hands on the wheel. Voice commands and speaker systems also ensure you do not have to look to operate your devices. Your phone can read directions or messages to you. You can dictate anything you would otherwise type.
But what about the third point? Unfortunately, hands-free tech does not help you keep your mind on the road. Some people may think this is not a big deal. After all, two of three is not bad, right? But studies show that mental distraction has a big impact on driver safety. For example, driver distraction increases during and after a conversation. This increased level of distraction lasts up to 15 minutes. The risk associated with extended distraction is well-documented. Therefore, hands-free tech does not address a primary risk factor.