January 19, 2010
With the hands-free ban coming into full affect February 1st, RoadAwareness.org will be performing a practical experiment of how distracted driving affects situational awareness and reflexes. This is an interactive opportunity for media to get on the track and test how much distracted driving really changes their driving ability.
The objective is to highlight that any hand-held or cell phone usage (even with the use of a hands-free kit) significantly reduces a driver’s situational awareness and reflexes and greatly increases the chance of being in a collision.
The experiment will be held on January 24th, 2010 in a controlled environment at Formula Kartways located at 79 Bramsteele road in Brampton. While seated behind the wheel of purpose built gokarts, drivers will go through several practical driving tests to gauge their skill, reflexes and awareness, with and without distractions. The experiment will be held from 10am to 1pm and it will take approximately 30 minutes for each person to complete.
We are pleased to have representatives James Kilpatrick from Young Drivers of Canada as well as Young Drivers of Canada Director of Training Scott Marshall (who also appeared as a Judge on Canada’s Worst Driver Seasons 1-3) participating. Also in attendance will be Kathy Buckworth (author of The Blackberry Diaries), auto journalist Michael Banovsky, and motorcycle instructor Julie Bolduc just to name a few.
Distracted driving causes drivers to be four times more likely to be involved in a collision and many studies have compared it to being legally impaired. Safer roads start with safer drivers. Key individuals and participants will be available for interviews.
“There is no excuse for paying less than 100% attention to the task of driving.”
–Shaun de Jager, Founder of RoadAwareness.org