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Are Hands-Free Devices Actually Safer?

Every day you hear about accidents that result from using a mobile device behind the wheel. Accordingly, drivers in Arkansas often outfit their vehicles with handsfree devices in an attempt to reduce the risk of being involved in a deadly crash. But are these devices actually safer? The National Safety Council offers insight into whether a hands-free device can protect you from being involved in a severe crash.

Distraction Is the Real Issue

While it’s easy to associate negligent driving with using a mobile device behind the wheel, this is actually only part of the problem. Distraction is a larger issue that goes beyond simply texting and driving. There are a multitude of distracted driving behaviors one could partake in, from eating while driving to carrying a conversation with a passenger. Accordingly, even using a hands-free device can still result in a distraction.

Three Factors Contribute to Crashes

Being a good driver often entails three factors. First of all, your hands should remain on the wheel at all times. Even momentarily removing your hands (to adjust the volume on your stereo for instance) can be an issue if you encounter an unexpected road hazard. You also need to keep your eyes on the road. Being alert will help you anticipate any potential issues while also allowing you to react in time. Lastly, you must also keep your mind on the task at hand. When you’re involved in a conversation via a hands-free device your mind is occupied elsewhere.

Most Crashes Are Caused By Driver Error

While you may believe that mechanical failure is a factor in many crashes, think again. In fact, driver error is the leading cause of crashes, with some estimates claiming that up to 94 percent of accidents result from a mistake made by a driver. When you’re not paying attention to the road you’re more likely to make mistakes, whether due to lack of attention or an inability to react in time. Not only will an accident result in property damage, it could also cause serious injury or even loss of life.

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