Distracted driving continues to plague the nation’s roads and highways despite growing awareness of the problem, new laws and advanced safety features in vehicles. Among the elements many new vehicles today contain are often infotainment systems. These electronic systems empower drivers to conduct any number of actions while driving from sending and receiving text messages to playing music or audio books and more.
Research into the safety of these infotainment systems has revealed that they dramatically exacerbate the problems associated with distracted driving. Last summer, AAA released the results of a study that compared the time required to complete certain tasks using the systems by drivers between the ages of 21 and 36 with those in the baby boomer generation aged from 55 to 75. Older drivers were found to require more time for all tasks evaluated, yet younger drivers still took enough time for each task to dramatically increase their risk of being in an accident.
Actions evaluated included making calls, programming navigation, texting and programming audio functions. Even among younger drivers, the least amount of time involved for any action was 17.7 seconds. The least time required for any action among boomers was 22.4 seconds. A two-second distraction doubles a driver’s risk of a crash. Programming navigation required 31.4 seconds for younger drivers and 40 seconds for older drivers.
This information is not intended to provide legal advice but is instead meant to give people some insights into the factors that may contribute to vehicular accidents, so they understand the importance of seeking help and taking action after any crash.