Driving requires the person behind the wheel to be nearly 100 per cent focused on the road and the environment surrounding the car. Anything, whether inside or outside the car, that distracts the driver can compromise their safety as well as that of the passengers. Is there a way for new technology to assist the drivers in keeping their concentration on the wheel?
Cell phones and driving
Statistics have shown that a large percentage of driving accidents are caused by mobile phones. Ever since cell phones were made available more than a decade ago, there have been an increasing number of automobile accidents caused by gadgets. Below are some of the instances when a cell phone can distract the driver:
- When they receive a call, text or notification, the device emits a loud attention-grabbing sound if they didn’t set their phone to silent.
- When the driver reaches out to their phone in order to answer the call or read the text.
- When the driver responds to the text message by typing a reply to the sender.
These distractions may not seem that long for anyone, but there could be critical moments which may happen in just a short amount of time. For example, a person is about to pass an intersection and answers their phone while the traffic light is showing green. They might miss seeing someone crossing the street whose attention is not on the vehicle and the traffic light. It is clear to see how mobile phones contribute to the number of accidents that have happened.
Numerous states around the world have issued laws which prohibit the use of cell phones while the vehicle is in motion. Offenders caught are required to pay a fine as posted by the state and will have a mark on their record.
Technological aid for distracted driving
There are numerous ways where technology can help drivers avoid any distraction caused by mobile phones. Here are some of them:
- Hands-free usage – There are mobile phones with voice command features where the user can answer calls without touching their phones. These phones also have a built-in speaker which provides a loud and clear volume to hear the caller. The only problem with voice command software is the chance of not recognising the command, distracting the driver even more.
- Call and text blocking software – There are services available where an app can use the built-in GPS or camera to detect if it is inside a moving vehicle. The app will block the calls and texts once it knows the automobile is in motion. It will send an auto reply to any call and text the phone receives. This technology offers a great benefit in avoiding any distraction. However, the app and service is still too expensive for the average person to afford.
Technology is just supplemental help for anyone to avoid the distraction posed by the use of their cell phones. Discipline will still help them keep their focus on the road to avoid making any mistake a compensation or accident lawyer can correct.