Motorists Hiding Mobilephones While Driving Put Themselves at ‘Higher-Risk’
Many young Drivers are risking their lives by hiding their mobile phones while driving, with new research indicating more than three-quarters put their mobile phones in their laps. Drivers were found to engage in phone conversations that tended to last nine minutes, on an average, for every hour of driving. They also twice held their phone to check for mobile notifications each hour.
One of the most concerning findings was that 77 per cent of those surveyed admitted they would hide the phone in their laps to avoid a fine for breaking the law. Having a mobilephone in your lap “escalates the risk” because it means you’re essentially “driving blind” with limited peripheral vision.
Drivers who put their phones in their lap were placing themselves anothers at high risk. “Driving is a visual task. Anything that removes your eyes from the road is very very dangerous,” he said. “Even looking at the phone for two seconds … because every second increases the risks dramatically.”
Almost half of drivers surveyed from the Call Taxi admitted that to locating and answering their ringing phone while driving, while 28 per cent of drivers held the phone after taking a call. About 34 per cent texted or browsed their phone three times every hour.
It is all too common to see drivers at traffic lights with their heads bowed down and eyes focused on their concealed mobilephone. It is advisable to the drivers to instead use a “cradle” affixed to the windscreen or dashboard at the eye-line level and to use hands-free, speakerphone functions or Bluetooth.
The Apple’s upcoming model Apple iPhone iOS software update will introduce an optional ‘Do Not Disturb While Driving’ setting which enables an iPhone to automatically silence the mobile notifications when it detects it is in a car.