February 20, 2006

In-Car Navigation Systems; Dangerous?

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We've all probably done it, play with the GPS while driving down the road, come on and admit it. It's a dangerous thing to do, but it's done anyway. Well it's being reported from the UK that playing with the GPS / SatNav while driving is in fact dangerous and they have the numbers to prove it, or at least imply it.

“One in 10 motorists with navigation systems set off on their journeys without bothering to program their route, and more than half admitted they had then had to take their eyes off the road to input the details whilst driving.
Nearly one in eight did not even bother to check out a route they were unfamiliar with and simply relied on the technology to get them to their destination.

In addition, almost one in four motorists said they had read maps while driving although research suggested that this might not be quite so distracting.

The survey of almost 2,000 people by Privilege Insurance found 19 percent of drivers who used their navigation system lost concentration compared to 17 percent reading a map.” Now I would argue that a two-percentage point difference is hardly a lot.

“The survey said most motorists who used either resource while driving would take their eyes off the road for 10 seconds, which at 60 mph, would equate to traveling twice the length of a football pitch. "Our research shows even satellite navigation equipment, if used incorrectly, can lead to driver danger," said Ian Parker, Privilege's managing director.”

So hey, be careful out there.

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Posted by Scott Martin at February 20, 2006 8:32 PM

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