Texting and Driving, Even Worse Than Previously Thought

Ben Brooks links Texas A&M University’s test track study:

…Participants were on a closed, wide, track driving 30 miles per hour while texting and there were “many close calls”.

I hope all the texters read this study! From the Reuters summary:

…Drivers were asked to stop when they saw a flashing yellow light, and their reaction times were recorded, Yager said.

The typical time it took a driver who was not texting to respond to the flashing light was one to two seconds. But when the driver was texting, the reaction time extended to three to four seconds, and the texting motorist was 11 times more likely to miss the flashing light altogether.

Yager said the reaction time was the same whether the driver was typing a message or reading one.

“The act of reading and writing a text message are equally impairing and equally dangerous,” she said.

Yager said the research differed from previous studies in that it involved participants driving actual vehicles, not driving simulators.

This is one of the reasons that we avoid cycling on roads with a lot of auto traffic. It is too dangerous now to share the road with distracted texting/phoning drivers. Even a bike lane doesn’t protect the cyclist from a swerving DWD driver (Driving While Distracted).