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(Extreme Tech)   Statistics show that talking on a hand-held cell phone while driving does not lead to more accidents. Texting drivers are still assholes though   (extremetech.com) divider line 76
    More: Interesting, London School of Economics, accidents  
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1960 clicks; posted to Main » on 10 Aug 2013 at 4:38 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-08-10 07:18:06 PM  

Jarhead_h: And cell phones are perfectly safe to use on an airplane, too. You think of any of the government types or their apologizers will admit it or change it if admitted?  The state cannot be wrong, ever - first commandment of government worship.


They are already starting to look at changing those laws. Sorry if erring on the side of public safety inconvenienced you for the whole 10 minutes it takes for a freaking plane to take off.

Cripes... we got a bunch of Jack Bauers and international diplomats trying to prevent WWIII up in here. I had no idea the average Farker was so important.
 
2013-08-10 07:20:48 PM  
Call me crazy, but could the fact there are fewer people commuting after 9pm have had anything to do with fewer accidents?  Lets make sure:  drop carrier prices during peak rush-hour traffic, and see if TFA's conclusions continue to hold.
 
2013-08-10 07:44:20 PM  

UsikFark: farkingismybusiness: [i.qkme.me image 431x712]

By the looks of it, 60.


Don't underestimate, I would say around 115 would be a more accurate number.
 
2013-08-10 07:44:33 PM  
TSB
I am a safety manager for one of our plants, and at a gathering of Safety Mgrs a while back, I was assigned to "write up a cell phone policy for the region", in preparation for California's ban on hand held cell phones coming that year. A couple of the plants already had hand-held cellphone bans in place, and my job was to write up the new policy  for the entire region to ban the practice. The VP who "volunteered" me for the task was dishing out some payback, for me being outspoken in opposition to his position on other subjects during the day, and this was his way to give me work and shut me down.

So, I did my research, because if I am going to write a policy, it's going to be based on as many facts as I can get, and found that most researchers agree that talking while driving is distracting: somewhat akin to a drink or two, for most people.  However, all the research showed that there was statistically no difference between holding the cellphone in your hand and talking, and talking on a bluetooth device, Onstar device, etc..  It was the act of talking that 'dumbed the brain down', not the use of a hand to hold the phone.

So, I tossed all the studies and research data into an addendum, and wrote the policy:  use of cell phones, PERIOD, while driving is unsafe, risky, and would not be allowed under company rules.  I sent it up the chain of command, all the way to the VP's desk who volunteered me, and it has sat there, for two years now, without comment.

Because I know that VP, his boss, his peers, everyone at Corporate, and the entire Sales Department constantly drive and talk on their hands-free devices. It's been two years, and I haven't been volunteered to write another policy for the region, either.
 
2013-08-10 08:28:22 PM  

graeylin: TSB
I am a safety manager for one of our plants, and at a gathering of Safety Mgrs a while back, I was assigned to "write up a cell phone policy for the region", in preparation for California's ban on hand held cell phones coming that year. A couple of the plants already had hand-held cellphone bans in place, and my job was to write up the new policy  for the entire region to ban the practice. The VP who "volunteered" me for the task was dishing out some payback, for me being outspoken in opposition to his position on other subjects during the day, and this was his way to give me work and shut me down.

So, I did my research, because if I am going to write a policy, it's going to be based on as many facts as I can get, and found that most researchers agree that talking while driving is distracting: somewhat akin to a drink or two, for most people.  However, all the research showed that there was statistically no difference between holding the cellphone in your hand and talking, and talking on a bluetooth device, Onstar device, etc..  It was the act of talking that 'dumbed the brain down', not the use of a hand to hold the phone.

So, I tossed all the studies and research data into an addendum, and wrote the policy:  use of cell phones, PERIOD, while driving is unsafe, risky, and would not be allowed under company rules.  I sent it up the chain of command, all the way to the VP's desk who volunteered me, and it has sat there, for two years now, without comment.

Because I know that VP, his boss, his peers, everyone at Corporate, and the entire Sales Department constantly drive and talk on their hands-free devices. It's been two years, and I haven't been volunteered to write another policy for the region, either.


Riddle me this... How does it compare to having an active passenger or a radio? Talking through a hands free device seems to me is rated like a passenger
 
2013-08-10 08:44:48 PM  
If you have the ability to answer your phone or start a call, you have the ability to pull over until you're finished with it.
 
2013-08-10 09:11:37 PM  

Whatchoo Talkinbout: I commute with self-absorbed phone-talking douchebags daily.
Drunks are better drivers.


Yup. If you cant focus on the road more than the conversation you shouldnt touch a phone.
Multitasking during a dangerous task that has little room for error is not for everyone.
 
2013-08-10 09:12:40 PM  
BULL. //That is all.
 
2013-08-10 09:22:23 PM  
It is not a one size fits all condition. Scrolling for a contact, reading email, setting a GPS and dialing on a damn touch screen are risky. The risk of talking is variable. If I am chatting with a friend I let them know I am driving so that I don't feel concerned about dropping my end of the conversation. Those types of calls can improve safety as it helps keep me alert on a long drive in the middle of nowhere. Talking about something contentious with family members or coworkers in city traffic is again kinda of risky. If talking where the issue they why are CB radios so common in long haul?
 
2013-08-10 10:47:11 PM  

biscuitsngravy: Got pulled over on the 101 last Monday afternoon for chatting on the phone. CHP officer let me off with a fix-it ticket for not having a valid insurance card in the glovebox. $25 ticket vs a $900+ ticket.


A "talking on cell phone" ticket is $900? Last I heard they were kind of in line with other minor moving violations, about $160.

Still, it's good to know that not all officers out there are dicknoses. I'll have to check my insurance cards; didn't realize we were still required to produce them since insurance status is now reported to the DMV (and, in turn, cops) by ins. co.'s automatically.
 
2013-08-10 11:49:13 PM  

People_are_Idiots: graeylin: TSB


... It was the act of talking that 'dumbed the brain down', not the use of a hand to hold the phone.

So, I tossed all the studies and research data into an addendum, and wrote the policy:  use of cell phones, PERIOD, while driving is unsafe, risky, and would not be allowed under company rules.  I sent it up the chain of command, all the way to the VP's desk who volunteered me, and it has sat there, for two years now, without comment.

Because I know that VP, his boss, his peers, everyone at Corporate, and the entire Sales Department constantly drive and talk on their hands-free devices. It's been two years, and I haven't been volunteered to write another policy for the region, either.

Riddle me this... How does it compare to having an active passenger or a radio? Talking through a hands free device seems to me is rated like a passenger


That's very simple. You do not interact with the radio - your brain is not engaged in an active way.
If you have a passenger that just talks then he/she can be like a radio, so you could be OK with that because again, it can be received passively.
When the passenger is trying to engage you in conversation and expect you to answer coherently, that can be as bad as the telephone conversation. Actually, one could argue that the telephone is worse because you are trying to picture the person you are talking to in your mind and this already takes your attention off the road. And then, any subject of the conversation that is not related to what you are doing at the moment is splitting your attention between what you are doing, and what the conversation is all about, which is not exactly a great thing, if what you are doing is driving on a busy highway or navigating a city traffic during the rush hour.
 
2013-08-11 12:57:00 AM  

CarrieWhite: Seriously, just get off the phone!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xk1vCqfYpos

If I take a call, or check text messages I pull over and make the car safe. Technically I'm still in the wrong because the law here is that you need the ignition off *and* I believe the key removed. (Not 100% sure about the latter).

I've been in situations where someone is about to pull out onto a road and they're talking on their mobile phone - so I've stood in front of their car indicating for them to get off it before I move so they can too. Sooner or later, they do.


What is so important it can't wait FIVE F*CKING MINUTES????
 
2013-08-11 03:25:56 AM  
The graph I want to see is: # of car improvements and safety features on a car since 1985 vs. number of cellphone drivers.

Believe me when I say I AGREE with the majority of people who think that cellphones cause more crashes, but the data doesn't support it and cars are STILL becoming safer every year. Now with "collision detection" systems added, and most likely soon to be made available on base models, it's just no comparison anymore.  It's the same argument that cell phones on airplanes cause interference to the navigation systems.

Now if we can get a study of people who carry a license with demerits/points and see the relation to crashes, i'm sure you might have something. Retarded drivers are still going to be retarded, either with or without a cell phone.
 
2013-08-11 04:18:08 AM  
Gyrfalcon, Debbie totally got this hot new boyfriend!
 
2013-08-11 04:55:25 AM  

aenemated: my dad was killed in an auto accident after some some chick blew through a stop sign and hit him.

she was talking on her phone and "didn't see the stop sign," according to the police report.

so, you know, fark those statistics.


Sorry for your loss. RIP
What ticks me off even more is the latest TV commercials for new cars being "smartphone friendly"
STFU and drive!
 
2013-08-11 05:23:00 AM  
Aenemated, sorry from me too. Hopefully the young woman got served some real justice.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-08-11 06:13:14 AM  
A study within the last few years found that people who use phones while driving tend to suck at driving anyway. That correlation reconciles the 1997 study, the current report, and the study finding that cell phone bans are counterproductive.
 
2013-08-11 07:17:33 AM  

People_are_Idiots: Riddle me this... How does it compare to having an active passenger or a radio? Talking through a hands free device seems to me is rated like a passenger


A radio is not interactive

A passenger may have some concerned about getting in an accident
and watches for and may alert possible threats or at least moderate the conversation
when driver attention is obviously required.
 
2013-08-11 07:26:32 AM  

MarkEC: Oldiron_79: edmo: And that graphic was carefully controlled to eliminate other things that could skew the results like safety improvements?

Listen, anybody that has seen a person talk and drive at the same time knows it decreases performance. Anybody who thinks they can text and watch the road is going to have an accident.

As someone who drives at work, I can say that people on cell phones are a bigger hazard on the road these days than drunks. Cell phone and driving should carry penalties AT LEAST as stiff as DUI

What work do you drive for that doesn't have you talking on a phone or a radio? What's the difference between someone talking on a cell phone and a cop talking with dispatch on his radio? I've been driving over 40K miles each year for the last 13 years and am frequently on the phone with the office or a client. That's over 500,000 wreck-free miles. I don't need a law to tell me to pay attention to the road while I'm talking. I use a bluetooth earpiece for both talking and texting, and I highly recommend one for anyone who drives so as to remove the encumbrance of holding a phone while driving.
I've seen plenty of careless drivers talking on their phones. I've also seen as many if not more doing other things carelessly like digging in their glove-box, or putting on make-up. You are only distracted by your phone if you let it distract you. I knew a guy that wrecked because he was looking at a zit on his nose in the mirror.


Well theres plenty of people that can not drive like they are drunk when they are technically over the limit, whats your point.
 
2013-08-11 08:35:06 AM  
Bull, I have to commute with idiots who weave across lanes because their hand is too busy with the phone instead the turn signal. They are so distracted they block traffic driving below the limit as they're looking down at their screens or the floor after they drop it.
News flash talkers: Your call is not more important than anyone's life on the freeway. Get over yourselves.
 
2013-08-11 08:37:34 AM  
You are comparing distractions to impairment, they are not equivalent. Going after cell phones would be like making it illegal to drive under the influence of Vodak but legal with Gin. I'm all for people getting tickets for swerving while talking on the phone or any other action that causes a loss of attention leading to bad driving. The phone is not the problem.
 
2013-08-11 10:03:24 AM  
"Statistics show..." is a great way to start a headline. That way I know the article is crap and I don't need to bother to read it.
 
2013-08-11 11:43:40 AM  

zepillin: People_are_Idiots: Riddle me this... How does it compare to having an active passenger or a radio? Talking through a hands free device seems to me is rated like a passenger

A radio is not interactive

A passenger may have some concerned about getting in an accident
and watches for and may alert possible threats or at least moderate the conversation
when driver attention is obviously required.


Sorry, I call BS. I actually am active when listening to radio (mostly cause I play songs I know and love) so I do hum, tap, and even sing in the car. Also I do move the dial a lot when commercials are on (and I have to take my eyes off the road for such). Even when playing my mp3 player, I have to take my eyes off the road.

9 times out of 10 passengers are asking more about nonsensical items you have to think on, which can also distract you from the road (that itself was proven). Also, more often than not, the passenger is not paying attention nowadays ("Oh I'm not driving" attitude).

My hands-free device is on my visor, has voice dialing with common names ("Call My House" dials my home number), and because of the position is easy to press without taking my eyes off the road. Unless the conversation is too engaging, I keep my eyes on the road and talk normally, like if a passenger was in the car... only my passenger is forward instead of to the right (or left depending on country).
 
2013-08-11 11:46:40 AM  
The chart doesn't prove that cellphone use does not impair driving.  However, that doesn't mean the statistics shown are worthless.

I've made a hobby of tabulating driver cellphone usage whenever I'm waiting at a light.  I count only people talking on a phone held to their ear.  I gave up trying to count texting drivers since a) it's impossible to tell what they're looking at in their lap, and b) it's actually very uncommon.  So, by my tabulations, (counting only passenger vehicles) roughly 1/6 drivers is on the phone at any one time.  The percentage is very slightly higher for women, but pretty dang close overall.

If this statistic is even remotely close to accurate on a national scale, then clearly handheld cellphone use is not the issue some would purport it to be.  It's disingenuous in the extreme to state that the reduction of accidents is strongly influenced by cracking down on drunk driving while in the same breath claim that talking on the phone is as dangerous as drunk driving.  Does anyone honestly believe that before this crackdown, one in six drivers was drunk?

It would also seem that while 'safer vehicles' could easily be a strong factor in the reduction of fatalities, it is much less so a factor in accidents overall.

Before we go regulating device locks that block phone usage in a moving vehicle, we'll need far more than anecdotes.  This study absolutely does not prove that such a law is unnecessary.  BUT it does (at least in my mind) show that 'conventional wisdom' on the subject is not enough.
 
2013-08-11 01:50:07 PM  
So many angry people who want to control their fellow man.
 
2013-08-11 03:59:02 PM  
I have a set of "Horn Blaster" train horns on my truck. I catch a person all over the road  trying to drive/text  you can be damn sure they will get a 3 second blast of my horns. Most times I swear they shiat themselves, 99% will put the phone away, the other 1% will flip me off for a while.
 
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