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Study: Are hands free cellphones safe to use while driving?

Not only is talking and texting on your hand held mobile device a dangerous activity to engage in while driving, it is illegal in the state of Connecticut. As a result, you may have turned to using hands free cellphones in an attempt to comply with the state’s law and remain safe while behind the wheel. A study released by AAA, however, shows that hands free cellphones may not be a safe alternative, as they are a form of cognitive distraction and may put Hartford motorists’ lives in danger.

The study focused on measuring the levels of cognitive distraction drivers experienced as they engaged in certain tasks, including listening to the radio, talking to a passenger in the car, maintaining a conversation on a hand-held and a hands free cellphone, listening to an audio book and using a voice-activated device to construct an email. Not only was each participant’s heart rate and brain activity measured during the drive, but researchers also looked at drivers’ reaction time and personal interpretation of distraction.

The results showed that although talking on a hand-held cellphone while driving was more distracting than using a hands free device, both presented a significant interference in the driver’s ability to concentrate on the road. While you may feel as though you are able to safely talk on a hands free cellphone and navigate Connecticut’s roadways, evidence shows that you are better to simply wait to use your cellphone.

This information should be used for educational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice. 

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