Best Excuse Ever For Using A Mobile Phone While Driving: It Was Just To Warm My Ears

from the gotta-remember-that-one dept

It's become quite common these days for various local governments to pass laws forbidding the use of mobile phones while driving (though, most allow the use of a hands free kit, which might not be any safer). However, one truck driver in Germany figured out a loophole that got him off the hook: he claimed he wasn't talking on the phone, but just using a recently charged mobile phone to warm his ears -- and the court believed him after he showed an itemized bill that showed no phone call at the time (found via Fark, of course). The man claims he had an earache, and that the heater in the truck cab took too long to warm up, so he was using the phone instead -- though, you can understand why the police officer might not have believed him.


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  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 4:14pm

    1st! I can see why in some states it's illegal to talk on your cell and drive, since some people can't do both, but I can :)

     

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    MiG, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 4:49pm

    Good for you

    It's great that you can, but will you be so happy when those people who can't and try it anyway crash into you?

     

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    Pendrake, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 5:01pm

    "Some" people can do both.

    There are "Some" people who claim they can drive while drunk too...

    Talking on a cell phone is not like talking to a person in the car or like listening to the radio. People get distracted because they pay attention to the person on the phone. If the person is in the car, they can also see what is happening, and pause the conversation when needed. A person on the phone doesn't see what is happening and doesn't know if they need to hold the conversation.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 5:09pm

    No one can drive safe AND talk on the phone at the same time. You aren't special.

     

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    Jake, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 5:14pm

    Erm...

    You know, I'm pretty sure that would fit the definition of 'using' a mobile phone in most jurisdictions.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:10pm

    To anonymous coward:
    Plenty of people CAN drive safe and talk on the phone, its the few that can't that cause the problems.

    If your arguement is that using a mobile phone requires the use of 1 hand, there are wireless devices for this. Also this would mean that the handicapped (missing an arm) cannot drive safely and should not be able to drive while handicapped. Which is wrong.

    If your arguement is that talking on a mobile phone is distracting, I find that there are far more distracting elements while driving that should be illegalized first. Such as roadside/building advertisements. These actually draw your attention and eyes away from the road. Are these ever going to become illegal? nope. Passengers and listening to music can be distracting. Looking for street signs can be just as distracting, illegalize those?

    The government needs to start putting more time and effort into bettering our life instead of controling it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:18pm

    Better to focus on one task than try to juggle two tasks at the same time which take more CPU.

    Beside, driving requires lot of brainpower anyway. Why burden yourself with mobile phones?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:19pm

    Re:

    1st! I can see why in some states it's illegal to talk on your cell and drive, since some people can't do both, but I can :)

    It's kind of like driving drunk. I've heard some people claim that they actually drive better drunk, but it's still illegal.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:21pm

    Re: Erm...

    You know, I'm pretty sure that would fit the definition of 'using' a mobile phone in most jurisdictions.

    That's just what I was thinking. I suppose it depends on how the specific law was worded.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:21pm

    Re: Re:

    comparing driving drunk to talking on a mobile phone is a quite a long shot at best.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:28pm

    Re:

    Plenty of people CAN drive safe and talk on the phone, its the few that can't that cause the problems.
    Studies have shown otherwise.

    If your arguement is that talking on a mobile phone is distracting, I find that there are far more distracting elements while driving that should be illegalized first. Such as roadside/building advertisements. These actually draw your attention and eyes away from the road. Are these ever going to become illegal? nope. Passengers and listening to music can be distracting. Looking for street signs can be just as distracting, illegalize those?
    Have you got anything to back those assertions up? I didn't think so. You seem to be just making crap up because you don't want to give up yakking on your phone while driving. The same kind of arguments have been made by those who want to drive drunk and they're full of crap too.

     

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    RandomPeanutGallery, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:39pm

    Re: Re:

    I don't get this type of arguement. Do YOU have anything to back YOUR assertions up? Other than mystery studies done by those people who agree with you on like stuff.

    Present the evidence of your claim before complaining that another isn't providing evidence for theirs.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:44pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    It's hardly a long shot. There have been quite a few studies that show that driving drunk and driving while talking on the phone are quite similar. Here are just a few:

    http://unews.utah.edu/p/?r=062206-1
    http://www.livescience.com/health/060629_cell_phones.ht ml
    http://www.news.com/8301-10784_3-6090342-7.html

    Stop talking and drive!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 6:48pm

    Re: Re:

    Studies can show anything you want them to show to get your point across. There are plenty of articles on tech dirt relating to the ambiguous nature of studies or statistics.

    I'm relating to common sense. Most people have it. There are much more distracting elements on the road, and delegating government resources and police officer's time to regulating the use of mobile phones while driving is a waste in my opinion.

    And stop comparing driving drunk to talking on a phone. Its like comparing an apple to a pile of horse shit. Both can be edible but the likeness ends there.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Alcohol can be proven to impair your driving physically and mentally through chemical reactions inside your body.

    Talking on a phone while driving can be shown to mentally impair those mentally incapable or driving while talking on a phone.

    There is quite a difference there.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:09pm

    Re: "Some" people can do both.

    I can drive drunk, while talking on a cellphone, eating a big mac, watching a TV, using a laptop, writing a note, high on weed....

    (Sarcasim)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    supposed to be "of driving" not "or driving"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    all of your articles point to the same study. of a sampling of 40 people...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is quite a difference there.

    Yeah, the main difference being that driving while cell yakking has been shown to be worse than driving while drinking.

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:46pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I don't get this type of arguement. Do YOU have anything to back YOUR assertions up?

    Sure, but someone else did in another comment.

    http://unews.utah.edu/p/?r=062206-1
    http://www.livescience.com/health/060629_cell_phone s.ht ml
    http://www.news.com/8301-10784_3-6090342-7.html

    And if pressed, I have lots of other references that I can dig out. There have also been lots of other references in these very forums. Use the search button at the top of the page. They aren't exactly "mystery studies" either. Of course, I could see how you might find university studies to be "mysterious" if you've never been to one.

    Now, how about you? Have you any legitimate research to back up your position or are you truly full of crap?

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 7:58pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I'm relating to common sense.

    That's a common line amongst people trying to ignore facts. They seem to believe that whatever they believe must be right just because they want to believe it. The mark of the ignorant.

    And stop comparing driving drunk to talking on a phone.

    Yeah, like I'm going to let you tell me what to do. Sorry, not going to happen. Maybe you'd be happier if you stayed away from places where someone might disagree with you.

    Its like comparing an apple to a pile of horse shit. Both can be edible but the likeness ends there.

    Again, your ignorance is showing. The published studies clearly explain the similarities. But then, I doubt that you've read any of them.

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 8:04pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Alcohol can be proven to impair your driving physically and mentally through chemical reactions inside your body.
    It only impairs the ability of those unable to resist being impaired by it. The rest of us can drive drunk just fine.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 8:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There have been quite a few studies that show that driving drunk and driving while talking on the phone are quite similar.

    Actually, the Live Science article showed it to be even worse: "While some of the participants crashed in a virtual vehicle while sober and chatting, none of them crashed while drunk."

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 8:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-12/100Car_ESV05summary.pdf

    quick summary:
    done in april 2006
    241 drivers
    100 vehicles
    12 month span
    real world driving.
    43000 hours of data
    ~2,000,000 vehicle miles

    69 crashes
    761 near crash
    8295 incidents

    Crashes: any contact between the subject vehicle and another vehicle, fixed object, pedestrian, pedacyclist, animal

    Near crashes: conflict situation, requiring a rapid, severe evasive maneuver to avoid a crash. I.E slamming on the breaks or swerving.

    Incidents: conflicts requiring an evasive manuever, but of lesser magnitude than a crash. I.E breaking harder than normal, slight swerve to reposition in lane.

    crashes are broken down even further with level 4 (non police reported low-g physical contact or tire strike greater than 10 mph, I.E bumping the curb) taking ~52%

    ~8.7% crashes related to cellphone usage
    ~8.1% near crashes are related to cellphone usage
    ~7.3% incidents are relate to cellphone usage

    Cellphone usage only had part in ~7.2% of all recorded events. And there is not data included to state wether these events were a result of cellphone usage or just happened during cellphone usage. Since cellphone usage was the highest recorded secondary task I'd say its a little of both.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 9:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    A little better than 40 people in a simulator.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 9:35pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Neither of these are sensation grabbing headliners like

    "TAlking on your cell is worse than drinking and driving"

    and the only reason i'm posting them is because you are asking for them, since studies mean so much to you.

    Do you seriously believe the hype that talking on a cell is 4x as worse as drinking and driving?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 9:49pm

    I AM TO SPECIAL!

    Not only can I DRIVE while I'm on the phone... I can take the time - to tell the person on the phone to HOLD ON, SHIFT to the next gear - AND THEN CONTINUE DRIVING!

    I think it's freaking fun to drive and talk on the phone... And those who can't put 99.99% of their attention into driving and .01% into TALKING (Considering that you have been talking since you were a baby!) - are the same people who can not walk and chew gum at the same time...

    And these people RUIN it - for those of us - TALENTED enough to balance a phone, driving, shifting, and eating a pizza at the same time! Like our fathers did! Back when cars were crap - braking distances were horrific at best!

    The problem is we've become so dependent on the government to "Protect" us - that we've become STUPID!

    President Bush v2.0 - "We are NOT in a recession" - about a month ago...

    President Bush v2.0 on week later "We are NOT in a recession YET"

    Hey A$$HOLE - If you are rich we're NOT in a recession - for the other 90% of our ignorant country who has not figured out how to shoot your stupid a$$ - and avoid Satan, AKA "Dick Channey" You would of been gone a long time ago!

    FOOD FOR THOUGHT FOR YOU BUSH SUPPORTERS!!! IF "Terrorists" were able to attack us... Without KILLING THEMSELVES - IN THAT PROCESS - DON'T YOU THINK THEY WOULD??? WAR IN THE MIDDLE EAST IS OLDER - AND ON GOING SINCE THE TIME OF THE ISRALIES BEING FREED FROM THE OPPRESSION OF THE EGYPTIANS!!! YET THEY - CONTINUE - TO BLOW THEMSELVES UP - TO KILL A FEW POOR SOULS! They are blowing up people - who are SO FAR away from them (SARCASTICALLY) - That quite literally they COULD FLICK A BUGGER AT THEM! YET THEY BLOW THEMSELVES UP! TERRORIST MY A$$! Homeland Security will NEVER work - as long as BUSH is in office... There is no REASON for Homeland Security... 5 planes get stolen - 2 planes fly OVER A FULLY STOCKED AND - FUNCTIONAL CONNECTICUT NAVEL BASE... Toward the towers - and everyone sits with their thumbs up their A$$!

    And for you military people who have been brainwashed... Such as one of my friends... Who's reasoning was... But they disabled the Transponder (A device inside of ALL commercial airplanes - THINK - LO/JACK) So does this mean that when we are in a DOG fight (Fighting the enemy in the air) EVERYONE KNOWS - WHERE EVERYONE IS??? Can you cry - FOUL - because the opposing team disabled their lo/jack??? WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO RADAR!!!

    For those of you who HATE BILL clinton... "He disarmed our military..." Our biggest threat WAS Russia! People in the Middle East have been blowing THEMSELVES UP! IF I could flick snot at you - and get away with it - I would...If I have to blow myself up - to get at you... Ulm... I don't think so...If I own a sling shot(WMD) - I'd use it... But if I have to hit you - with my hand... I might decide to try and send someone else to do it... FOR ME!

    Al-Qaeda says - worst things to come - yet... These are proud people - who have victory parades for every successful explosion... And proudly - claim they're the ones who did that! Yet, the only fan-fare was based on their hatred for us. And here we are - HELPING THEM! And NO group has taken claim to the prize of destroying people's lives!

    THINK PEOPLE!!!

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 17th, 2008 @ 9:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    " Alcohol can be proven to impair your driving physically and mentally through chemical reactions inside your body.

    It only impairs the ability of those unable to resist being impaired by it. The rest of us can drive drunk just fine."

    no it is proven that even if you have a high tolerance to alcohol it is still a proven FACT that a chemical reaction takes place in your body that impairs you physically and mentally. Even if only very slightly and you feel no effects the chemical reaction still takes place.

    There is no FACT, no PROOF, that cellphones impair your driving. Only studies and counter studies between different groups of individuals.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 2:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is no FACT, no PROOF, that cellphones impair your driving. Only studies and counter studies between different groups of individuals.

    There is no FACT, no PROOF, that alcohol impairs your driving. Only studies and counter studies between different groups of individuals.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 2:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    A little better than 40 people in a simulator.

    100 people in a non-controlled situation with a totally unknown number of unknown an unaccounted for factors is better than a carefully controlled study? Man, you don't know much about scientific methods, do you? Or maybe that's the problem: You don't believe in science. I bet you think the earth is only 6000 years old too, don't you?

    Better than 40 people in a simulator? Nope. Nowhere near as good.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 2:39am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Thanks for providing that 100 car study link. Another snippet from that study: "... cell phone use contributed much more frequently to incidents and near-crashes than any other secondary task..." That doesn't sound too good for cellphones to me.

    And note that this study didn't even look at alcohol usage. In other words, they didn't get people drunk and then send them out on the road to see what would happen. So it says nothing about the relative dangers of cellphone usage while driving versus drunk driving. It just said that cellphone usage was the most dangerous form of distraction.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 3:01am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    All that Brookings study found was that their method failed to find a correlation between cellphone usage and accidents. It did not find that such a correlation does not exist. Like if I look under my bed for rabbits and don't find any it doesn't mean that rabbits don't exist. It may just mean that I'm looking in the wrong place.

     

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    Gunnar, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 6:03am

    Re:

    Talking on the phone is no more distracting than talking to someone in the passenger seat. When I talk to people while driving, I essentially ignore them, paying attention only to the road, stopping mid-sentence if I feel the need to. Talking on the phone is no different.

    My dad takes his eyes off the road and turns to look at the person in the passenger seat, but he doesn't do that with a phone.

    There are shades. My dad is a terrible driver even without a phone in his hand. But he's far more distracted by a passenger than something on his ear.

    Distractions are distractions. Holding a phone to your ears isn't a problem,talking at all is a problem.

     

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    Alimas, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 6:10am

    Relativity

    All of you arguing over whether or not talking on the cell phone while driving is as bad or worse then driving while drunk have failed at life for failing to note the obvious: people are inherently different individuals.
    As that implies, some people might be better at it than others.
    The law can't attempt to differentiate those who'd be better at it from others, can it? No, the position must be universal.
    Its also worth pointing out, that there are probably extremely few people who have ever gotten into their car and drove while multi-tasking with a cell phone and were entirely unsurprised when they crashed into someone.
    The risk with the cell phone is that one, typically, must look at it to use it, at different points and either use a hand or sit awkwardly to keep it in their ear (there are of course hands free systems that alleviate that issue).
    That means that intermittently your not watching the road and your responsiveness is slower.
    Before someone says "what about the radio", let it be heard (go look it up), the radio in a car is not an uncommon catalyst for an accident.
    I'd also like to mention that the last five times I was almost in an accident were because the other person on a cell phone wasn't paying attention and almost side-swiped me or shoved me off the road entirely.
    Again, people differ. I say let people use their cell phones, if they get into an accident and die: natural selection. Hit me cause your on your phone, I will wrench you dry in court.

     

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  35.  
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    Scott E., Mar 18th, 2008 @ 7:05am

    Mobile Phones and Driving Don't Mix

    Cell phones are a distration to a driver. Their use while driving should be outlawed.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 7:21am

    Re: Mobile Phones and Driving Don't Mix

    By that logic police shouldn't be able to talk to one another while persuing someone. Its too dangerous.

     

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    SP, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 7:28am

    idiots...

    There is no FACT, no PROOF, that cellphones impair your driving. Only studies and counter studies between different groups of individuals.


    Oh yeah? Tell that to the dumba$$ little bitch who was in front of me yesterday, going on an on-ramp to the freeway going no faster than 35mph because she was TOO DAMN BUSY YAPPING TO HER STUCK UP BITCHY FRIENDS TALKING ABOUT HOW COOL HER PRINCESS PINK BUG THAT DADDY BOUGHT HER IT -- to pay attention to how fucking SLOW she was driving. She wasn't looking - she didn't put on her signal to indicate she was merging. She didn't bother to look as she was merging and she came VERY CLOSE to being clipped by a damn truck... not to mention pissing me and everyone behind her OFF for going 35mph entering a damn FREEWAY!!!



    Don't even TRY to tell me that cell phone use doesn't impair driving. It IS a KNOWN FACT that there are MANY *IDIOTS* who CAN NOT HANDLE talking and driving. Doesn't matter if it's hands-free or not!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 7:52am

    Re: Relativity

    I say let people use their cell phones, if they get into an accident and die: natural selection. Hit me cause your on your phone, I will wrench you dry in court.

    I find your mercenary attitude appalling. There are some things that just aren't worth any amount of money you could collect in court. Like the death of a loved one.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 8:31am

    http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-12/100Car_ESV05summary.pdf

    that study also shows that you are 9x more likely to get in an accident while being distracted by something other than a cellphone.

    Which is what previous posts were asking for a study to back up.

    a simulation in a controlled environment works for many scientific experiments, except real life driving is an uncontrollable environment and the simulation depends on the designers thoughts of what it should be like and the limitations in the abilities of the programmers to bring the thoughts to life. All the simulation shows is that 40 people have problems driving a fake car in a fake environment created by a small group of people while carrying on a fake phone conversation.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 9:18am

    Re: Re: Relativity

    If that loved one was too dumb to realize that they were not capable of maintaining their lane and drive properly while on a phone, then fuck them, they deserve to die. Yes I may love my family, but they make their own decisions. All I can do is shape the minds of my children and hope they are smart enough to take my lead.

    I drive 500,000 miles a year for my messenger service. I am constantly on my phone hands free. I have no problems driving properly and using the proper road etiquette. One of the major issues is that most people refuse to use the hands free or speakerphone. Too bad for them. Let natural selection have them. Darwin is hard at work.

     

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    Alimas, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 9:28am

    Re: Re: Relativity

    I find your apparent attitude that we should be baby-sitted appalling.
    Many things can't be replaced by money; that doesn't mean more laws to be enacted. Life is full of risks, from something so mundane as eating something new (might not like it or be allergic) to getting out on the highway.
    I think it should be legal for people to be stupid. It isn't the government's job to try to make up for where stupid in the general populace falls short. Our society would function much better if the focus for motivation in decisions were more on personal responsibility rather than on the idea of "if you get caught".
    Penalties for crashing into someone else's car or injuring someone else cause you were on the cell phone should by remarkably high, it shouldn't be outlaws from the outset.
    But I'm deviating a little bit as this connects to a larger issue.

    But, yeah, your attitude is appalling.

     

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    JustThinking, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 11:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Relativity

    Interesting entries by you, Coward. If only people at fault were injured or killed on the road, your arguments would work. Unfortunately a lot of times (probably about half) it's an innocent bystander - your wife, your daughter, your neighbor, being slaughtered. If you'd stop to think before writing your moronic posts you might have caught that one. I think the best you can do right now is to just back away and be quiet - try it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 12:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Relativity

    i can perform a loop-d-loop and a barrel roll in a leerjet on microsoft flight simulator. does this mean its true in real life?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 12:52pm

    Re: Re: Re: Relativity

    I find your apparent attitude that we should be baby-sitted appalling.

    The willingness to sacrifice the lives of one's parents, children, etc. for an opportunity to file a lawsuit and make a quick buck off it is a sign of a truly demented and disturbed individual. That really explains a lot. No wonder you're such a proponent of cellphone driving.

    No, you are actually way beyond having an appalling attitude. You're sick (and sickening).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 18th, 2008 @ 1:06pm

    Re:

    that study also shows that you are 9x more likely to get in an accident while being distracted by something other than a cellphone.

    You're just digging your hole deeper. Don't you know that people can just look at figure 6 to see what they really said (that cellphone was the most dangerous distraction by a large margin)? Just how stupid do you think everyone is?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    icon
    Derek Kerton (profile), Mar 18th, 2008 @ 5:14pm

    Questioning The Numbers

    Building off comment #24:

    Let's say that cellphones were some kind of a factor in about 7% of traffic incidents.

    Let's also, then, say that cellphones are being used 7% of the time that people drive. (After all, people do this a lot, this is why there is an issue.)

    To be clear, these are just assumptions, not facts, I'm just going to use them to make a simple point:

    Of @#$@# course with those two assumptions cellphones are a "factor" in 7% of traffic incidents, if they are used in cars 7% of the time. That would, actually, mean that cellphones had zero net effect on the accident rate.

    Before a stat that "cellphones were a factor in 7% of incidents" can have any meaning, you need to also prove that they are used less than 7% of the driving time, and therefore are OVER-represented in incidents.

    A similar fault of logic would be to say that being an administrative assistant is a factor in 1% of traffic incidents. But it turns out that admins make up 1% of the population, so of course they will have accidents too. Or that being male is a factor in 53% of accidents, so males should be banned from driving...then again, some of you might agree to that.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
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    Cixelsid, Mar 19th, 2008 @ 5:38am

    Re:

    "If your arguement is that talking on a mobile phone is distracting, I find that there are far more distracting elements while driving that should be illegalized first. Such as roadside/building advertisements. These actually draw your attention and eyes away from the road. Are these ever going to become illegal? nope. Passengers and listening to music can be distracting. Looking for street signs can be just as distracting, illegalize those?"

    Look, actually its quite simple, to process visual information your brain needs a lot of processing power - the visual cortex is the largest part in your brain - in order to process it all your conscious mind employs a lot of tricks to filter out visual information that it considers unimportant.

    Eye tracking has shown that when a person is faced with a particularly challenging task the eye focus moves to parts of the visual field that do not require a lot of processing.

    E.g. ever noticed how, during conversation, people will stare at the ceiling or shift their gaze if you ask them a particularly difficult (e.g. a mathematical) question? They are actually removing their gaze from your face in order to free the brain from the stresses of facial recognition.

    When driving a well known route it is possible for your brain to memorize and then filter out most of the visual information so that you can focus on the conversation you are having on your cellphone. (Ever gotten home and then wondered why you can't remember the drive?)

    However, the danger is when you introduce an anomaly into the well known route, such as having to evade the car who changed lanes without checking its blind spots, or the pedestrian who suddenly decides to run across the road. In which case your brain will process the visual cues a lot later than it would have if you had not been talking on the phone - simply because thought processing and visual processing are almost mutually exclusive.

    Another example - saw this on a british documentary - do a driving course and drive the slalom cones. Then try doing it while counting backwards from 999 in multiples of 3.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 20th, 2008 @ 8:36pm

    Re: Questioning The Numbers

    To be clear, these are just assumptions, not facts, I'm just going to use them to make a simple point:
    The simple point you seem to be making is that you are ignorant of how proper scientific studies are conducted and analyzed. Proper studies use controls to account for such things. In the end, all you've done is demonstrate your willingness to make stuff up.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    identicon
    Different Environment, Mar 24th, 2008 @ 9:25am

    I think it has to do with where you are driving/density of cars/zone you are driving in and the type of conversation you are having.

    Apparently driving in a crowded city with cars all around you, cabs pulling ahead of you to stop and drop off a passenger, will require all of your attention and talking on a cell phone or even hands-free should be banned.

    Driving in a corn field? Go ahead, have a teleconference.

    BS-ing on the telephone may not require much of brain function so you can still drive well and pay more attention to the car ahead of you. But many types of conversation require you to think before you speak and that's more demanding on the brain.

    All in all, it makes sense that cell phones are banned in some and not all states.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    Gregory Harrison, Apr 2nd, 2008 @ 1:25pm

    Help

    I am trying to find out how the police is track people with out a warent and useing this tracking to locate you and to have your neigbers to watch you with out cause, before this happen they come to me trying to find out if someone in the area was selling drugs now it looks like they are traking me by putting out leis and I can not find anyhelp with this thing that have been a thorn in my side,any help.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    identicon
    Tina, Sep 27th, 2009 @ 11:47pm

    Re: "Some" people can do both.

    You obviously have never driven with kids or pets in the car because they do not show any such courtesy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  52.  
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    BadGirl7am, Jan 19th, 2010 @ 4:06am

    Talking & Driving and..

    Excuses, Excuses there is a time and place for everything.

    Just because you can pick your nose and drive at the same

    time doesn't mean you should be doing it.

    BTW There is a study out that concluded picking your nose

    while driving was the second most distracting activity.

    The Number ONE distraction of talking on the cell phone

    while driving.

    I can also have sex while i drive and intentionally hit

    every pothole with accuracy..

    Does that mean i should be doing that too?

    Point is there is a time and a place for everything.

    It's dangerous to take your focus off the road.

    The bedroom is for sex.

    A car is heavy and potentially DEADLY machine to operate.

    paying attention to the road is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of

    Driving.

    The mistake is feeling so cozy in your car that you think you dont affect anyone else.

    When YOU arent paying attention to the road and chatting on the phone.

    Picking your nose should be done discreetly,privately.
    (With a rag if you have to pik your freaking nose.)

    And what does it say about the people who are calling you while you drive.

    Especially if they know you are driving.

    It says they arent concerned about your welfare.

    Or they are just as stupid as you are and also talking on the phone while they drive.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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