Kids in the Car are more Dangerous than DUI. On of the biggest contributors to traffic accidents and fatalities is distracted driving. Previous studies have shown that using a cellphone while driving is as dangerous than DUI. Driving while sleep deprived is more dangerous than DUI. Texting while driving is more dangerous than DUI.
And now, a study from Monash University Accident Research Center confirms what the biggest distraction of all might be – children in your car. That makes driving with kids in the backseat more dangerous than cellphone use, and thus, makes kids in the car are more dangerous than DUI.
The study made the amazing finding that, given the average trip length of 16 minutes, the average parent takes their eyes off the road for 3 minutes and 22 seconds during that 16-minute trip.
Kids in the Car are more Dangerous than DUI – here’s why.
Associate Professor Charlton said while the risks of distraction during driving are becoming increasingly well known – drivers often don’t consider their own children to be a distraction and this highlights the need for education about the risks of focusing on their children rather than the road.
“Previous research has shown that, compared with driving alone, dialing a mobile phone while driving is associated with 2.8 times the crash risk, and talking or listening while driving is associated with 1.3 times the crash risk,” Associate Professor Charlton said.
“The costs of distracted driving are undeniable. One major and previously unrecognized distraction is kids in the backseat.”
In the Monash study, drivers were observed engaging in potentially distracting activities in 90 of the 92 trips. The most frequent types of distractions included turning to look at the child in the rear seat or watching the rear-view mirror (76.4 per cent), engaging in conversation with the child (16 per cent), assisting the child (7 per cent) and playing with the child (1 per cent).
The study found that the presence of a front seat passenger did not significantly affect the way in which drivers engaged in potentially distracting child occupant-related activities, both in terms of frequency and duration.
One area that may assist in reducing driver distraction is correct restraint of children in their car seats. The researchers found children were in the incorrect position for over 70 per cent of the journey time. Kids in the car are more dangerous than DUI, but more likely to be in a seatbelt during accidents.
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