April, Distracted Driving Awareness Month – Hands Free is Not Risk Free NSC Infograph

Think you are safe if you are not holding your phone while driving but are having a hands-free conversation? Safety experts call it the hands-free myth. A recent National Safety Council (NSC) poll shows that 80% of U.S. drivers believe hands-free cell phones are safer than using handheld. However, over 30 scientific studies have shown that there is no safety benefit conferred by going hands-free.  (Read some of these studies on our “Research and Statistics” page).

The reason is the cognitive distraction. Just because your hands are on the wheel and you are looking forward toward the road ahead does not mean that you are driving distraction-free. Your mind must also be on the task of driving. The area in the brain that processes moving images decreases by up to one third when having a phone conversation and drivers can miss up to 50% of what’s around them -“tunnel vision”. Many ask, so how is this any different than talking to a passenger in your vehicle?

For April, Distracted Driving Awareness Month, the National Safety Council is launching the first national campaign to focus of the dangers of using hands-free devices while driving. View their infograph to better understand this issue:

Hands free not risk free
Provided by The National Safety Council