Older drivers more likely to be distracted by car technology

In-vehicle technology is more likely to distract older drivers in Ohio than their younger counterparts, according to a new report. The study, which was released on July 25, was conducted by researchers at the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and the University of Utah.

In-vehicle technologies, such as GPS systems and infotainment consoles, often have multiple screens and options that can distract drivers. However, researchers found that older drivers tend to be more distracted by these technologies than younger drivers. Specifically, they found that drivers between the ages of 55 and 75 took their eyes off the street around eight seconds longer on average than drivers between the ages of 21 and 36 when trying to type in navigation commands or change a radio station. The study involved 128 drivers and in-vehicle information systems from a selection of 2018 Audi, Cadillac, Lincoln, Mazda, Nissan and Volvo models.

Previous AAA studies have found that drivers double their risk of a crash by taking their eyes off the road for just two seconds. In addition, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that over 3,000 Americans were killed by distracted drivers in 2017. While most new in-vehicle technologies offer voice-command functions, safety advocates say the systems tend to be complex and confusing, forcing drivers to take their eyes off the road.

Motor vehicle accidents caused by distracted drivers are becoming increasingly common in Ohio. Someone who has been injured in a distracted driving accident could contact a personal injury attorney for advice. The attorney could evaluate the case and work to recover the victim's loses, which may include medical bills, rehabilitation expenses and pain and suffering.

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