Most Texas drivers know that driving while intoxicated is a serious danger to all people on the roadway and can cause serious personal injury and death. Likewise, it is becoming increasingly more obvious that driving while texting is dangerous, and is occurring at an alarmingly increasing rate. What many may not realize, however, conduct that almost everyone engages in was addressed in a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) and stresses that driving while talking on a cell phone is also dangerous. Yes, just talking on the phone distracts a driver’s attention.
Published data supports the theory that driving while distracted is the equivalent to driving while intoxicated. However, according to the article most people do not feel as though talking on a cell phone is any more dangerous than talking to other passengers. This belief is misguided. Studies have shown that talking on a cell phone affects the brain differently than talking to passengers. For additional information, see Strayer DL, William JA. Driven to Distraction: dual-task studies of simulated driving and conversing on a cellular telephone. Psychol Sci 2001: 12:462-466.
Talking on a cell phone while driving affects the brain differently than talking to passengers and is inherently more dangerous to everyone on the roadway.