Voice Activated Car Systems Still Major Source of Distraction

Many new cars on the market today have a number of built-in safety features designed to help drivers experience less distraction on the road. Voice-activated systems can do just about anything from placing a phone call or writing a text message or email to adjusting the radio or dictating navigation. Yet with all of these new car technologies, research suggests that voice-activated systems have the potential to be just as distracting as the hands-on activities they were designed to replace.

According to a study conducted for AAA, use of voice-activated systems can cause lingering distractions lasting up to 30 seconds. A lapse of full attention for this length of time is enough for a driver to span the length of three football fields, dramatically increasing their risk of becoming involved in a serious car accident.

AAA surveyed 250 drivers to rate several 2015 car models with built-in systems on their overall effectiveness. Among the vehicles with the most distracting and/or difficult to use systems were the Mazda6, Chevrolet Malibu, Volkswagen Passat, Ford Taurus, and the Hyundai Sonata. However, users found that even with the most reliable voice-recognition systems, some tasks were still cumbersome or difficult to complete, even with practice.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is using the findings of this study to come up with a list of guidelines for automakers to help them minimize the safety risks associated with voice-activated systems in the future.

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Distracted driving is responsible for thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of injuries throughout the United States every year. If you are seeking experienced representation after a car accident, turn to Mitchell Law Firm. For more than three decades, we have dedicated our practice to helping accident victims throughout California pursue compensation from negligent drivers. We have achieved numerous successful outcomes for past clients and have earned a solid reputation for our tenacity, skill, and commitment. We keep the best interests of those we serve at the forefront of everything we do.

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