What the study found
The study concluded that drivers using voice-based and touchscreen technology experienced very high levels of visual and mental demands when completing tasks like programming navigation or sending a text message.
It also accounted for how long it took drivers to complete tasks using vehicle technology, and discovered that programming navigation was the most distracting task behind the wheel, taking an average of 40 seconds for drivers to complete. At just 25 mph, a car can travel the length of 4 football fields during that time.
Researchers found that most infotainment systems tested could easily be made safer by simply following federal recommendations, such as locking out text messaging, access to social media, and programming navigation while the car is in motion.
Another recent AAA survey shows that nearly 70% of U.S. adults want this new technology in their vehicle, but only 24% believe the technology works properly.
What AAA recommends
AAA recommends drivers avoid the temptation to engage with these technologies when the vehicle is in motion.
AAA believes a safe in-vehicle technology system should not require high visual and mental demands from drivers. AAA encourages automakers to improve technology, and has offered to help work with them to reduce demands on drivers. By following the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s voluntary guidelines to lock out certain features while the vehicle is in motion, automakers can significantly improve the safety of new vehicles on the road.
For more tips and more information about what you can do to avoid distracted driving, visit AAA's distracted driving hub.