Driving with a mobile phone is 'worse than drink driving'

photo Using a mobile phone in a motor vehicle can be more dangerous than drink driving

Using a mobile phone in a motor vehicle is more dangerous than drink driving, a recent research review has concluded.

The Transport Research Laboratory report reveals that drivers using phones have slower reaction times than those over the legal alcohol limit.

Studies used driving simulators to measure driver reaction times.
According to the TRL, drivers using mobiles tend to look at the road for longer, but this is at the expense of scanning mirrors.

LCC cycling development officer Charlie Lloyd said, “When cycling, you must look out for drivers using mobile phones. Give them a wide berth and, if they're driving erratically, report them to the police.”

He added, “If you witness, or are involved in a crash, ask the police if the driver has had their phone confiscated and ask that the records be checked to see when the phone was last used.”

Not just mobile phones that distract
The TRL study also raises concerns about other forms of in-vehicle technologies, claiming more needs to be done to understand how drivers interact with potential distractions.

The review looked at four TRL studies conducted since 2002 and revealed more needs to be done to define a level of distraction considered ‘safe’.

TRL research estimated that driver distraction contributes to 50% of all crashes, while a study earlier this year by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute revealed that texting while driving increases the risk of collision by 23 times.