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Slide Presentation Title

Why driving while using hands-free cell phones is risky behavior National Safety Council White Paper Motor Vehicle Crashes No. 1 cause of death for 3- to 34-yearolds Distractions now

An estimated 39,000 to 46,000 people killed in crashes every year More than 2.2 million injuries from crashes in 2008 join alcohol and speeding as leading factors in fatal and serious injury crashes. Distracted Driving Driver distractions leading factor in fatal and serious injury crashes In 2008, 28% of all crashes attributable to cell phones 1.6 million crashes 645,000 injuries Cell phone users 4x as likely to crash

Millions of People are Talking While Driving 11% of drivers at any point during the day are on cell phones 81% of drivers admit to talking on cell phone while driving: 74% of Boomers 88% of Gen X 89% of Gen Y 62% of Teen Drivers

Millions of People are Texting While Driving 18% of drivers admit to texting while driving: 4% of Boomers 15% of Gen X 39% of Gen Y 36% of Teen Drivers

Driving Culture Change A century ago, Model Ts brought motoring to an emerging middle class. A half century ago, teenagers cuddled in convertibles at drive-in movies. A new generation of drivers see cars as an extension of their plugged-in lives, with iPods, DVD players and other gadgets. USA Today, 2-17-2009 Driving Culture Change

Websters Dictionary named distracted driving its 2009 Word of the Year In 2009: More than 200 state bills introduced U.S. DOT Distracted Driving Summit held President Obama signed Executive Order NSC membership survey Favorable public opinion polls How Cell Phones Distract

Visual Eyes off road Mechanical Hands off wheel Cognitive Mind off driving CHALLENGE: Drivers dont understand or realize that talking on a cell phone distracts the brain and takes focus away from the primary task of driving. The Problem Hands-free seen as solution and

mistakenly believed to be safer than handheld People recognize the risk of talking on handheld and texting more than the risk of hands-free Most legislation focuses on only handheld devices or texting All state laws and some employer policies allow hands-free devices Hands-free

devices offer no safety benefit when driving. What is a Hands-Free Device? Headset that communicates via wire or wireless connection to cell phone Factory-installed or aftermarket feature built into vehicle (voice recognition)

Cognitive Distraction Cognitive distraction still exists with hands-free Talking occurs on both handheld and hands-free cell phones Mind focuses on conversation Listen and respond to disembodied voice Hands-free devices do not eliminate cognitive distraction.

Multitasking: A Brain Drain Multitasking for the brain is a myth Human brains do not perform two tasks at same time Brain handles tasks sequentially Brain switches between one task and another The four lobes of the brain. Source: National Institutes of Health Multitasking: A Brain Drain Brain engages in a constant process to: 1. Select information brain will attend to 2. Process information 3. Encode to create memory 4. Store information It must also: 5. Retrieve 6. Execute or act on information When brain is overloaded these steps are affected Multitasking: A Brain Drain Encoding Stage Brain filters information due to overload Drivers not aware of information filtered out Information does not get into memory

Drivers miss critical information on potential hazards Inattention blindness and encoding. Source: National Safety Council Multitasking: A Brain Drain Brain juggles tasks, focus and attention Brain switches between primary and secondary tasks Inattention blindness When people do 2 cognitively complex tasks

(driving and using a cell phone), causing brain to shift focus Bottleneck Different regions of brain must pull from a shared and limited resource for unrelated tasks Inattention Blindness A type of cognitive distraction looking but not seeing Hands-free drivers less likely to see: High and low relevant objects

Visual cues Exits, red lights and stop signs Navigational signage Content of objects Inattention Blindness A narrowed scope Where drivers not using a hands-free cell phone looked.

Where drivers using a hands-free cell phone looked. Source: Transport Canada Multitasking: Impairs Performance Carnegie Mellon University Study (2008) Took fMRI pictures of brain while drivers listened to sentences and drove simulator

Literally see the results Driving with sentence listening Driving alone L R

L Functional magnetic resonance imaging images. Source: Carnegie Mellon University R Multitasking: Impairs Performance Just listening to sentences on cell phones decreased activity by 37% in the brains parietal

lobe which perceives movement, integrates sensory information and also has importance for language processing Listening and language comprehension drew cognitive resources away from driving Also decreased activity in brains occipital lobe which processes visual information Multitasking: Impairs Performance We can walk and chew gum safely because

it is not a cognitively-demanding task But even cell phone-using pedestrians act unsafely. They are less likely to: Look for traffic before stepping into street Look at traffic while crossing street Notice unusual objects placed along path Multitasking: Impairs Performance Driving involves a more complex set of tasks

than walking: Visual Manual Cognitive Auditory A drivers job is to watch for hazards, but this cannot be done when brain is overloaded Cell Phone: Driver Risks Inattention blindness Slower reaction/response times

Problems staying in lane Passenger Conversations Adult passengers share awareness of driving situation, a safety benefit Front seat passengers reduce risk of crashing by 38% compared to cell phone conversations Adults with passengers have lower crash rates than adults without passengers Not true for novice teen drivers Prevention Steps Widespread education Corporate cell phone bans Legislation Law enforcement Technology

Download the NSC White Paper More than 1.6 million crashes are caused by cell phone use and texting while driving each year.

Joe, 12 Bailey, Merideth, Hannah, Sara and Katie Cady, 16 Erica, 9 Jean and Jay, 58 Countless lives

have been lost as a result. Linda, 61 Jason, 38 Lauren, 17 Matt, 25 Frances, 13

Jordan, 18 Help us save lives. Tell everyone you know. On the Road, Off the Phone

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