Author's Opinion

The views in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of iTWire.

Have your say and comment below.

Thursday, 03 January 2008 07:43

Cell phone drivers slow traffic

By
We've known for a long time that drivers that yak away on their mobile phones are irresponsible tossers (yes, that "we" probably excludes those irresponsible tossers), but now we know that not only are they more likely to cause accidents, they also help to bung up the traffic.

Researchers at the University of Utah's Applied Cognition Laboratory (PDF) have found people talking on a phone while driving along a simulated multilane freeway are less likely to change lane when they catch up with a slower-moving vehicle, resulting in a lower mean speed and a negative impact on traffic flow.

That said, changing lanes in such circumstances can actually impede traffic flow if not done correctly. Have you ever encountered a snarl-up on a freeway, only to see it clear a few kilometres along the road with no indication of an accident or breakdown?

Chances are that it was caused by someone changing lane into a too-small gap, causing the vehicle coming up behind to brake. That deceleration propagates back along the road, with heavier breaking needed by drivers who fail to leave sufficient separation, and that results in traffic coming to a near standstill. Consequently, drivers in that lane try to move left or right, triggering similar 'shock waves' in those lanes.

And don't think you're OK if you use a hands-free kit or Bluetooth headset. Other research carried out by the Applied Cognition Laboratory has shown that once the call is established, there's no difference in levels of distraction between holding the phone and hands-free operation, and talking on the phone is a much greater distraction than conversing with a passenger.

So switch your phone off before you drive away. I'd suggest making it a New Year Resolution, but they're not very successful.


Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here

GRAND OPENING OF THE ITWIRE SHOP

The much awaited iTWire Shop is now open to our readers.

Visit the iTWire Shop, a leading destination for stylish accessories, gear & gadgets, lifestyle products and everyday portable office essentials, drones, zoom lenses for smartphones, software and online training.

PLUS Big Brands include: Apple, Lenovo, LG, Samsung, Sennheiser and many more.

Products available for any country.

We hope you enjoy and find value in the much anticipated iTWire Shop.

ENTER THE SHOP NOW!

INTRODUCING ITWIRE TV

iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the iTWire.com site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.

SEE WHAT'S ON ITWIRE TV NOW!

BACK TO HOME PAGE
Stephen Withers

joomla visitors

Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous

WEBINARS ONLINE & ON-DEMAND

GUEST ARTICLES

VENDOR NEWS

Guest Opinion

Guest Interviews

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News

Comments