Don’t count on using a hands-free texting application will make you a safer driver – you may have a false sense of security. In plain terms, it really depends on how good a driver you are to begin with – and, if you believe that your safety can be at risk when using any type of cellular device while sitting behind the wheel, speeding along at 70 miles per hour. Auto insurance companies know all too well the consequences of texting or talking on the phone while driving. The ultimate result is quite often a large payout to the policyholder or other drivers involved for injuries and damage to their vehicle.
Over the past few years, since cellphone technology has progressed into the texting realm of communication, many people have discovered the hard way that texting and driving, similar to drinking and driving, don’t particularly mix well. That’s why laws have been established worldwide to curb the growing epidemic of distracted driving accidents, which have caused a substantial increase in serious injuries and casualties associated with texting and cellphone use…including, here, in the Golden State.
As more iPhone and Android HFT (Hands Free Texting) apps become available, chronic users of texting to stay in touch may believe they’re much safer when driving. While that may be partly true, the fact is – distraction, although decreased, still exists. The main reason that texting while driving causes so many accidents is the loss of hand-eye coordination. And, since hands-free texting apps don’t require the same amount of coordination, it only makes sense to assume that they should reduce distracted driving.
However, keep in mind that, although hands-free, voice-operated texting apps seem like an easy solution to curing the wide spread problem, anyone who’s driven while talking or listening to a passenger knows the conversation can still be a distraction. In the end, it really comes down to maintaining your attention on the road rather than the conversation.
Without putting all of your focus on your driving, the risk of having an accident remains, as a study, conducted in 2008 by the University of Utah, proved. The results showed that 50 percent of drivers using hands-free headsets to talk while driving were still distracted enough to miss their exits or turn down the wrong street.
The point is, whether you download a free app or pay for one of the many now available, hands-free technology should be given some consideration. After all, it can’t be expected that teens or their adult counterparts, who engage in this dangerous habit, will stop texting altogether while driving just because it’s the law. It would be extremely naïve to believe so. But, if the apps actually do make a dent in distracted driving statistics and accompanying casualties, then they’ll have shown their safety value in the long run.
As a final note – remember – distracted driving of any kind can not only be hazardous to your health, but also to the health of others and should be avoided as much as possible. Regardless of hands-free texting apps or not, your attention needs to be concentrated on the road ahead – not on texting.
You may also want to concentrate on making sure that you’re getting the best rate on your auto insurance. Why not get a free auto insurance quote today?
Are you currently using a hands-free texting app? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.