Although behind the wheel distractions have existed as long as cars have, the recent sharp increase in distracted driving has often been linked to the rise of technology that can be used in a vehicle, such as cell phones and mobile GPS units. Other technological innovations have been invented to address the problem – but does all this technology in our cars really make it easier to keep our minds, eyes, and hands on the business of driving?
Here are a few examples of technologies intended to solve distracted driving that may actually make it worse:
1.) Infotainment Systems
Onboard “infotainment” systems that integrate music, GPS, phone, and other tools can help drivers streamline these tasks. However, studies indicate that whether the system actually decreases distraction depends entirely on how it is designed. For instance, systems that disable certain features when the car is in drive may be more effective than systems that don’t.
2.) Voice-Activated Controls
The use of Bluetooth and similar technologies makes it easier for drivers to keep their hands on the wheel by using their voice to activate various vehicle features, such as changing a radio station or answering a phone call. Driving, however, is a mental task, not just a manual one. Even being able to place a call by speaking may distract a driver from the road if the driver’s mind is on the call.
3.) Call Blocking Capabilities
Several companies have announced research on tech tools that would use a car’s GPS features or engine data to block cell phone calls and text messages while a vehicle is in motion. Although these technologies are not yet commercially available, they may pose additional distraction issues of their own – and, of course, there’s no technology to prevent drivers from becoming sidetracked by eating, personal grooming, or their own daydreams.
Distracted driving claims thousands of lives on U.S. roads every year and contributes to thousands of additional injuries. If you’ve been injured by a distracted driver, an experienced California car accident lawyer can help. To learn more, contact The Paris Firm today via phone number 909.551.4040 or via our online contact form.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.