Talking to your car is not as crazy as it sounds. There are a whole host of in-dash tools and electronic equipment installed in most vehicles. Voice-activated smart phones and in-dash entertainment systems are examples of some of the electronic components that may integrate with your vehicle and that you may be able to “talk” to.
Unfortunately, many people believe that talking to their electronic devices while driving is safe. There are many motorist who avoid picking up their handheld devices or holding their cell phones as they drive, but who feel perfectly comfortable using voice-activated controls. The reality, however, is that even talking to your car can be very dangerous and can significantly increase the risk that a motor vehicle accident will happen. An experienced Atlanta car accident lawyer should be consulted by victims involved in a collision for help understanding their legal rights if a distracted driver causes a car accident to occur.
Talking to Electronics Increases Car Crash Risks
According to Yahoo News, several recent studies have found that many voice-activated electronic systems are “so error-prone or complex that they require more concentration from drivers rather than less.”
In other words, motorists trying to make the safe and smart choice to talk to their phones, GPS devices or other in-vehicle electronics may be actually at greater risk of getting hurt in a car crash than those who choose to hold the devices and enter data by hand.
The studies revealing this troubling information was released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, working jointly with the University of Utah. One study examined infotainment systems in popular vehicles made by Mercedes, Chevrolet, Ford, Chrysler and Hyundai. Another study took a close look at whether using Apple’s virtual assistant Siri was safe while driving. The motorists in this study navigated, sent texts, posted on Social media accounts or used their calendar by asking Siri to take care of the tasks for them.
The different systems were graded on a scale of one (least distracting) to five (most distracting) and were tested by 162 different university students and other volunteers in a lab setting, in a driving simulator and while driving in a neighborhood in Salt Lake City.
Apple ended up receiving the worst rating in the study. Drivers who were using Siri in a driving simulator rear-ended other vehicles twice. Because Siri was so distracting, Apple’s system received a rating of 4.14.
Among the infotainment systems, Chevrolet’s MyLink received the lowest rating of just 3.7. The infotainment system from Chevrolet, as well as from Mercedes, Ford and Chrysler, were found to be much more complicated than just using a cell phone would have been.
Drivers need to be aware that their hands-free devices are not necessarily safe and should make it a priority to stop using all electronics in any form while driving and instead to remain focused on the road at all times.
The Atlanta car accident lawyers at Sammons & Carpenter, P.C. can represent you after an injury in a motor vehicle crash. Call today at 404-991-5950 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.