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September 16th, 2013

Hands-Free Cell Phone Use While Driving Contributes to Driving Errors

A new study finds that the use of hands-free cell phones while driving increases the risk of committing major driving errors that could place a motorist at a higher risk of an accident.

Broadly, many of the cell phone laws that have been passed by many states across the country have included texting while driving, and in some cases, the use of hand-held cell phones while driving. As many as 10 states currently ban the use of hand-held cell phones by motorists behind the wheel. However, there has been extensive research that has indicated that the use of hands-free sets at the wheel also increases distractions, and could possibly increase the risk of an accident.

A new study also confirms this fact. The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Alberta, who recruited 26 participants. All of these participants were made to complete a driving course, and the researchers measured their brain activity while they were driving and having a conversation on a hands-free set. The research was divided into two parts. In the first part, the participants completed the driving course without any distractions, while in the second section, the participants completed the course while having a casual conversation on a hands-free cell phone.

The researchers found that even when the participants were having a casual conversation on a cell phone, they displayed marked increase in brain activity. They also seemed to show a slight increase in cardiac rate, as well as a significant increase in the oxyhaemoglobin in the brain, combined with a drop in the deoxyhaemoglobin. This is indicative of heightened neural activity.

As a result, the participants made a number of driving errors, including driving at high speeds, making improper lane changes and crossing the center line. All of this increased their risk of being involved in an accident.

The Houston car accident lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers represent persons injured in car accidents across Texas.

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