Parents Exhibit Distracted Driving Behaviours
In a recent study conducted by the Fairfield University School of Nursing, a majority of parents who where surveyed admitted to being distracted by their smartphones while driving. The survey, headed by Linda Roney, canvassed over 500 parents, grandparents and guardians and revealed that almost 3/4 of the respondents admitted to using their phones to talk, text or even email while driving with children.
Cellphone use while driving is one of the leading causes of driver distraction. There is however, very little data on how drivers deal with cellphone use while there are other occupants in the car. Ms. Roney’s study addresses whether adult drivers will engage in cell phone use with passengers in the car and determines whether the frequency of that behaviour was modified if the passenger was a child.
Distracted Driving Study
The criteria for the subjects involved in the study included participants who were 18 years or older with a valid driver’s license, who drove with children, who owed/used a cellphone and who read English. The results were reported on a 4-point scale, (always, often, rarely and never).
The result indicated the following data;
– 80% of the participants confirmed that they used their cellphone in some way while driving with children.
– Compared with similar behaviours when driving alone or with adult passengers, the odds of reporting “always” compared with “often, rarely, or never” of holding a cellphone in hand was determined to be .66 of respondents when driving with children.
The study concluded that cellphone use is common and although it is less frequent when children are in the vehicle, distracted driving behaviour continues in vehicles regardless of whether drivers are with passengers (in this case children) or by themselves.