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Sync drivers were much less likely to swerve out of their lanes than non-Sync drivers

There have been numerous studies that have shown that distracted drivers can be as dangerous on the road as drunk drivers. Some recent studies have shown that texting while driving may actually be just as dangerous as driving intoxicated.

In an effort to reduce the distractions that drivers are confronted with while driving some stated have instituted hands free laws that require drivers to use hands free kits to make calls while driving. Ford has a system called Sync in some of its vehicles that offers all sorts of hands free technologies to make driving safer while still allowing drivers to stay in contact and listen to music from digital devices.

Ford commissioned a new study that has shown significant differences in how distracted drivers are when using its Sync system compared to not using it. For the study, Ford had drivers select a phone number or choose a song on their MP3 players using Sync compared to doing the same thing manually.

Drivers who did the tasks manually had their eyes off the road for about 25 seconds while drivers using Sync had their eyes off the road for approximately two seconds. Participants in the study were asked to dial ten-digit phone numbers, call a specific person form the digital phone book, receive a call while driving, play a specific song, and review and respond to text messages.

The time eyes were off the road was measured by the researchers for drivers using both methods. Ford says that drivers performing these tasks manually swerved out of their lane 30 percent of the time while Sync users never swerved out of their lane. Ford has also announced a new 911 Assist feature for Sync that can dial 911 post-crash automatically.

Dr. Louis Tijerina from Ford said in a statement, "These real-world results indicate that SYNC's voice-interface offers substantial advantages compared to using a handheld device to do the same task."



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RE: In other news...
By afkrotch on 2/6/2009 2:14:04 PM , Rating: 2
What good is saying all that, while there's not enough cops on patrol and not enough money to get more cops on patrol.

It'd be easier to just force car manufacturers to install a gps speed limiter and cellphone jamming into the car. GPS tracks the road your on and the speed limit, then limits your car to not go above that speed, while the cellphone jamming of course, jams your cellphone from being used while the car is in motion.

Will it happen. No. Course none of that does crap to the ladies out there who put on their make-up while driving or road head.


RE: In other news...
By Steve1981 on 2/6/2009 2:21:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
What good is saying all that, while there's not enough cops on patrol and not enough money to get more cops on patrol.


If you change the punishment from a fine to revoking the license for a few months, you don't really need more cops.

The punishment is considerably worse than a $100 or even a $1000 fine, meaning there is considerably more risk involved, which generally translates into fewer people willing to take that risk.

Second, even if people are willing to take that risk, their numbers will dwindle as they get their licenses revoked. If they choose to drive without a license, they can go to jail.

quote:
Will it happen. No.


Of course not. But I can dream!


RE: In other news...
By Spuke on 2/6/2009 2:47:27 PM , Rating: 2
Since driving is indeed a privilege and not a right then it would not be illegal nor unconstitutional to install GPS speed limiting devices in vehicles. Nor would other devices that disable phones (except for 911) while the car is moving be considered such either. Other than expense, why isn't this done?


RE: In other news...
By afkrotch on 2/6/2009 3:32:57 PM , Rating: 2
Profit. Car A doesn't have that crap to screw you over. Car B does. Majority buys Car A.

Or who pays to put this crap into the cars. The ppl who buy the car? Taxpayers? Car manufacturers? Someone's gotta swallow the cost.


RE: In other news...
By HinderedHindsight on 2/6/2009 3:48:34 PM , Rating: 2
There is yet another issue: and that's the fact that states do rely on traffic infringements as a source of revenue.

Just like we have regulations for headlights, window tinting, gas mileage and seatbelts, we could have speed governors mandated in all cars.

The problem with that idea is that the state would see it's revenue massively decreased as it is the higher speed tickets that really bring in the revenue. Even if you could get the public behind it, the states probably would not institute it.


RE: In other news...
By afkrotch on 2/6/2009 3:22:24 PM , Rating: 2
I'm living in Germany. Doing 30 kph over the speed limit is an instant suspension of your license for 3 months. Hasn't stopped me yet. Highest speeding I've done has been 160 kph in an 80 kph zone. They also do a point system. Doesn't seem to get others to slow down either.

Japan. Don't know about license suspensions, but they have high fines for speeding. We're talking the $1000+ range. It also didn't stop me from speeding. Not sure about point system, never cared. Never got caught speeding. Hell, street racing and touge battles happen every weekend.

Stateside. Got 1 speeding ticket in Idaho, 1 in Wymoning, 2 in Colorado, and 1 reckless driving in Colorado. Drifting around turns is highly unadvised in Colorado apparently. ;P


RE: In other news...
By Steve1981 on 2/6/2009 3:32:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm living in Germany. Doing 30 kph over the speed limit is an instant suspension of your license for 3 months. Hasn't stopped me yet.


Then clearly they're enforcing the law quite well.

quote:
Highest speeding I've done has been 160 kph in an 80 kph zone.


That's something to be proud of.


RE: In other news...
By afkrotch on 2/6/2009 3:44:30 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, they enforce the law. It's the problem of not having enough policemen to cover every mile of the road to watch for speeders. No country has that, so there will always be speeders, ppl driving while using a cellphone, drinking and driving, etc.

Cops are very adamant about DUIs, but the number hasn't exactly decreased.

That's $1000 fine, 1 year suspension, and possible jail time. A hell of a lot stricter than what you have planned, yet we still constantly get DUIs. I bet while I was typing this up, at least 100 DUIs have happened in the US.

If that's not bad enough, there are even harsher punishments for 2nd and 3rd offenses. Which does occur also.

If you're a speeder, odds are high, you'll keep doing it.


RE: In other news...
By Steve1981 on 2/6/2009 3:50:59 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Cops are very adamant about DUIs, but the number hasn't exactly decreased.

That's $1000 fine, 1 year suspension, and possible jail time. A hell of a lot stricter than what you have planned, yet we still constantly get DUIs. I bet while I was typing this up, at least 100 DUIs have happened in the US.

If that's not bad enough, there are even harsher punishments for 2nd and 3rd offenses. Which does occur also.


Unfortunately some people are just plain stupid and don't care about consequences: those are the types that need to be confined in prison for the rest of their lives.

In any case, while some are not deterred by the punishment for a DUI, I bet a lot fewer people commit DUIs than speed.


RE: In other news...
By afkrotch on 2/6/2009 3:59:04 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think it's the punishments that stop ppl from committing a DUI. I think it's more along the lines of self preservation. Smart ppl know if they have a hard time walking, driving a car will probably kill them. Dumb ppl just do it.


RE: In other news...
By Eris23007 on 2/9/2009 4:19:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Unfortunately some people are just plain stupid and don't care about consequences: those are the types that need to be confined in prison for the rest of their lives


Unfortunately, some people are just plain stupid and believe that the government can effectively legislate and enforce all behaviors of free people: those are the (fascist) types that need to be prevented from ever voting in another election.


RE: In other news...
By Steve1981 on 2/9/2009 4:36:24 PM , Rating: 2
Nah. I just expect a government built on the principle that all people have a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to lock away the psychopaths that don't care who they hurt, whether they're yacking on the phone instead of paying attention to traffic or driving at double the posted speed limit...

If you can't understand that your rights end when they interfere with the rights of others to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, I can't help you.

If you don't have the brains to figure out that yacking on your cell phone, be it hands free or otherwise, breaks your focus on driving enough to significantly increase your likelihood of getting into an accident and potentially injuring or killing others, I can't help you.


RE: In other news...
By Steve1981 on 2/9/2009 5:03:25 PM , Rating: 2
And as far as the safety goes..

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-he-cells30-2008...

quote:
There are limits to how much we can multi-task, and that combination of cellphone and driving exceeds the limits," says David Strayer, a University of Utah psychologist who has found that by many measures, drivers yakking on cellphones are more dangerous behind the wheel than those who are drunk, whether the conversation is carried on by handset or headset.


quote:
For instance, in a 2005 Australian study published in the British Medical Journal, researchers interviewed, during a 27-month period, 456 hospitalized cellphone users who had each been involved in a crash. The scientists combed the drivers' call records to see how cellphone use affected their driving. Whether they talked hands-free or with a phone clasped to their ear, the result was the same: During calls, and for 10 minutes after their completion, a driver's likelihood of crashing shot up fourfold.


quote:
Marcel Just, a neuroscientist at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, conducted brain imaging of 29 young adults to gauge the cognitive demands of simultaneously driving and listening. Lying in a functional magnetic resonance imaging machine, the subjects steered a simulated car down a winding road. On a second run, they steered the car while listening to general-knowledge statements and identifying them as true or false.

The study, published in April in the journal Brain Research, found that subjects who were allowed to navigate undisturbed showed robust activity in the brain's parietal lobe, a region long associated with spatial sense, distance calculations and judgments that require a person to calculate his whereabouts in a broader physical environment. When the task of listening to the sentences was added, blood flowed to different parts of the brain generally involved in the processing of language. As those language areas came alive, activity in the parietal lobe declined by almost 40%.

While engaged in the listening task, drivers simultaneously listening to sentences veered off the road and onto the shoulder almost 50% more often than those allowed to focus uniquely on driving. And all they had to do was steer the car forward: no cars veered into their lane, no children darted into the road, no construction site loomed up unexpectedly.


But go ahead and keep being an a-hole who doesn't care about the consequences of his action. Just don't expect "facists" like me to sit idly by and watch.


RE: In other news...
By nilepez on 2/8/2009 10:13:17 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
quote:
Highest speeding I've done has been 160 kph in an 80 kph zone.
That's something to be proud of.


IME, nobody in Europe follows the traffic laws on the highways. As I recall, I was going at least 50% over the speed limit in Italy, and I was getting passed up like I was standing still by virtually everyone.


RE: In other news...
By DigitalFreak on 2/6/2009 4:25:40 PM , Rating: 2
I'm thinking that you should be killed before you kill someone else.


RE: In other news...
By acase on 2/6/2009 2:47:22 PM , Rating: 2
Finally someone with realistic sense. Don't go knocking road head now though.


"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone

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