Hands-free cell phone in car is not safer than hand-held

joann23456July 30, 2012

In light of the recent thread about cell phone use while driving, I thought I'd point out that it's a myth that using a hands-free device (like a bluetooth headset or one of the new cars that lets you plug in the phone) is safer than talking while holding the phone in your hand. Every study I've seen shows that the significant piece of cell phone use while driving that makes it unsafe is talking with someone who is not physically present in the car. (If they're sitting next to you, they can see when traffic is bad and know to shut up.)

There is evidence to suggest that when a person drives while holding a cell phone, s/he slows down to try to compensate, but when hands-free technology is used, people get a false sense of security.

There was a study, maybe more than one, about five years ago that showed that talking on a cell phone was about as unsafe as driving while intoxicated.

Here's just one study, but there's lots more information on the web, if you'd like to look.

There was a time, many years ago, when I did talk on my cell phone while in the car. Given the huge amount of evidence now available, I don't any more. And I don't talk to anyone if I know they're on a cell phone - I tell them to call back.

Other links:

http://www.distraction.gov/content/get-the-facts/facts-and-statistics.html

http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2012/03/05/hands_free_devices_don_t_make_it_safe_to_talk_text_and_drive_.html

Here is a link that might be useful: National Safety Council link

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gazania_gw

Thank you, Joann 23456!

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 3:44PM
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emma

I read that in our local paper.

I see people holding a cell when they are driving and I don't understand that. I can understand calling and saying, I'm taking mom to the ER or something similar, but talking any longer seems silly to me dangerous or not. Why not wait until you get home and can sit and relax. Nothing is so important it can't wait until I get home. It seems like people always have to be connected or they are not happy. To me it is similar to Facebook. WOW I have 1,000 friends. LOL

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 3:48PM
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petaloid

Thanks, Joann -- you have taught me something important to know.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 4:42PM
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alisande

I'm glad to see that, because I learned a long time ago not to talk on the phone and drive at the same time--and it has nothing to do with using my hands.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 5:46PM
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