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Thread: Hands free mobile phones

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    Default Hands free mobile phones


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    Driving simulator highlights dangers of hands-free calls

    The dangers of using hands-free phones while driving have been highlighted by a simulator.

    Since the ban on using handheld phones whilst driving in 2003, hands-free has become more widely used, so BBC Inside Out South presenter Jon Cuthill took part in an experiment to test whether his hazard perception was affected by talking on hands-free.

    Researchers at The University of Southampton say that whilst on the phone your brain automatically visualises the person you’re talking to, which limits your ability to recognise hazards.

    Last month the Commons Transport Select Committee said current laws give the "misleading impression" that hands-free options are safe.



    It rather begs the question as to why car manufacturers integrate phones into their vehicles and make this a selling point when it is clearly a distraction to the driver.

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    Should Get Out More slowsider's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Lutin View Post

    It rather begs the question as to why car manufacturers integrate phones into their vehicles and make this a selling point when it is clearly a distraction to the driver.
    Not safe, but perhaps safer? At least there isn't that distracting scramble to hide it if you spot a cop . Maybe integrating them gives the impression of Doing Something.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Is it much different to talking to a passenger?

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Apparently the 'shared experience' when talking to someone in the car makes it safer; your not wanting to interrupt the flow with someone who doesn't know what's going on compared to someone who does.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Noggin View Post
    Is it much different to talking to a passenger?
    Quote Originally Posted by Kneerly Down View Post
    Apparently the 'shared experience' when talking to someone in the car makes it safer; your not wanting to interrupt the flow with someone who doesn't know what's going on compared to someone who does.
    There are several aspects.
    - Sound quality & delay. With a passenger it's as good as it could be, mobile sound is poor
    - Awareness of your driving - many (not all) passengers will be aware of your workload, and it's easier to 'hold that thought' with a passenger
    - Visualisation - they're there, so you don't have to imagine them
    - Non-verbal cues

    But that's not to say that passengers - especially kids in the back, or pished friends - are not distracting!

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    From 2002;

    https://trl.co.uk/reports/TRL547

    How dangerous is driving with a mobile phone? Benchmarking the impairment to alcohol
    Published 1 January 2002

    Research has shown that phone conversations while driving impair performance. It is difficult to quantify the risk of this impairment because the reference is usually made to normal driving without using a phone. 'Worse than normal driving' does not necessarily mean dangerous. There is a need to benchmark driving performance while using a mobile phone to a clearly dangerous level of performance. Driving with a blood alcohol level over the legal limit is an established danger. This study was designed to quantify the impairment from hands-free and hand-held phone conversations in relation to the decline in driving performance caused by alcohol impairment. The TRL Driving Simulator was used to provide a realistic driving task in a safe and controlled environment.

    Twenty healthy experienced drivers were tested in a balanced order on two separate occasions. The drivers were aged 21 to 45 years (mean = 32, SD = 7.8 ) and were split evenly by gender. Before starting the test drive, participants consumed a drink, which either contained alcohol or a similar looking and tasting placebo drink. The quantity of alcohol was determined from the participant's age and body mass using the adjusted Widmark Formula (the UK legal alcohol limit 80mg / 100ml). The test drive had four conditions: (1) motorway with moderate traffic, (2) car following, (3) curving road, and (4) dual carriageway with traffic lights.

    During each condition the drivers answered a standard set of questions and conversed with the experimenter over a mobile phone. The independent variables in this repeated measures study were normal driving, alcohol impaired driving, and driving while talking on hands-free or hand-held phone.

    Results showed a clear trend for significantly poorer driving performance (speed control and response time) when using a hand-held phone in comparison to the other conditions. The best performance was for normal driving without phone conversations. Hands-free was better than hand-held. Driving performance under the influence of alcohol was significantly worse than normal driving, yet better than driving while using a phone. Drivers also reported that it was easier to drive drunk than to drive while using a phone. It is concluded that driving behaviour is impaired more during a phone conversation than by having a blood alcohol level at the UK legal limit (80mg / 100ml).

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    One of the problems with research is that people seem not to know that a previous study has been done. My work with clinical trials has shown that the level of reporting of results, and more specifically lay summaries which the ordinary person can understand, is woeful. So sometimes it's hardly surprising that large amounts of money are poured into trials and studies the answers to which are already known.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by iansoady View Post
    One of the problems with research is that people seem not to know that a previous study has been done. My work with clinical trials has shown that the level of reporting of results, and more specifically lay summaries which the ordinary person can understand, is woeful. So sometimes it's hardly surprising that large amounts of money are poured into trials and studies the answers to which are already known.
    One of the first things we usually do is a literature review - but, even then, stuff can get missed. Of course, it could be that the client for the research doesn't know, or wants a good story. How often you see companies publishing 'newsy' research . . .
    Last edited by Horse; 06-09-19 at 12:35.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Lutin View Post
    It rather begs the question as to why car manufacturers integrate phones into their vehicles and make this a selling point when it is clearly a distraction to the driver.
    Why are modern cars full of driver distractions, GPS, dashboards that display loads of useless info, rev counters etc.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Julian_Boolean View Post
    Why are modern cars full of driver distractions, GPS, dashboards that display loads of useless info, rev counters etc.
    Because driving is boring and you need to engage the driver with "something"?

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Julian_Boolean View Post
    Why are modern cars full of driver distractions, GPS, dashboards that display loads of useless info, rev counters etc.
    Because when you are unfolding a paper map its easy to let the revs build up ?

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by slowsider View Post
    Because when you are unfolding a paper map its easy to let the revs build up ?
    In ye olden dayse, I did see someone in lane 2 of the M4 with an 'AA book of the road' type map open on the steering wheel ...

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Julian_Boolean View Post
    Why are modern cars full of driver distractions, GPS, dashboards that display loads of useless info, rev counters etc.
    Feature creep. Just because manufacturer has feature "X", their competitors have to have "x" and "Y" and "Z" etc etc.

    Whether any of this is inherently safe is rather by the by.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    I still find it fascinating that smoking whilst driving is still allowed. I consider that to be more dangerous considering the burning item poses a risk if the driver drops it, plus many people throw them out of the window into oncoming traffic.

    I saw someone chomping on a Mc Donalds today whilst they were driving.

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    Default Re: Hands free mobile phones

    Quote Originally Posted by Julian_Boolean View Post
    Why are modern cars full of driver distractions, GPS, dashboards that display loads of useless info, rev counters etc.
    A rev counter is very useful information.

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