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Hands Free Driving Just As Dangerous As Distracted Driving?

Our addiction to technology and smart phones has posed a problem on our roadways. Distracted driving includes many things, but is most commonly associated with texting while driving. Unfortunately, this dangerous behavior has resulted in tragic, avoidable accidents, claiming lives and injuring many. Car companies have caught on and hands free, smart car technology has entered the field. While these cars offer a hands free option so drivers can focus on driving, it seems they may be more frustrating than helpful to the driver.

A recent study from AAA and the University of Utah shows that making a hands free call can be more distracting than picking up your phone. Special test vehicles, heart rate monitors and other equipment helped to simulate the automotive experience while measuring how much mental distraction was produced by using in vehicle hands free phone systems.

Of the six systems tested, 4 scored as more mentally distracting than a handheld cell phone. Often times, the system may improperly hear a command, sometimes forcing the system to start from the beginning or initiating the wrong command (ex. Calling the wrong contact). It was reported that these complications seemed to interfere with the helpfulness of these systems. Which poses the questions, until these hands free systems become simpler and more intuitive, are they worth it?

Does your car have a voice command or hands free system? Do you find that it helps you stay focused on driving safely, or it is just as, if not more, distracting and dangerous as using a handheld phone? We would love to hear you weigh in on this topic – find us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and now Pinterest to share your thoughts.

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Article Name
Hands Free Driving Just As Dangerous As Distracted Driving?
If you own a car that operates hands free technology, it is likely that you’ve encountered frustration with your car’s misinterpretation of your commands at least once. While these systems are implemented to keep us focused on driving, could they actually just as bad as using our phones? Our blog discusses the results of a study comparing handheld use to voice commands in terms of mental distraction. Read more for the full blog.

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