TEXT FOR ONE SECOND, BLIND FOR 27.7 METRES
Over the next few weeks the Queensland Police Service (pictured constable Mitch Croghan) will be dismantling the five to help you stay alive. In their second week they will be focusing on inattention: When you think about it, driving a car safely takes a pretty special set of skills. Not only do you have to be able to co-ordinate all your vehicle controls like the accelerator, brake, clutch, steering, indicators, wipers and so on, but you need to know how to contend with all the stuff that’s going on with the traffic around you as well. Have a look around you on the commute though, and you’ll soon see that there are some who don’t give the task of safe driving the attention that it rightly deserves – and that’s when things can go pear-shaped very quickly. Let’s just take the mobile phone for instance. Research shows that using a mobile phone while driving renders a driver four times more likely to be involved in a serious traffic crash. It’s not hard to see why because it takes your focus off driving and onto holding a conversation. What we need to be aware of is that when travelling at 100kph we are covering just over 27.7 metres of road every second, so a two second glance at the phone equates to about 55.5 metres travelling blind. There can be a lot of activity occurring within 100 metres of your car so the dangers are glaringly apparent. There is simply no text message that cannot wait until you have parked your car safely.