Te Puke Times - - SPORT -

More and more peo­ple own smart phones, and some find it hard to switch off, even for a minute. But you should never use your phone at the wheel. Mak­ing or tak­ing calls, tex­ting, us­ing the in­ter­net or check­ing so­cial me­dia while driv­ing is in­cred­i­bly risky. All these things are a bit like drink-driv­ing: they slow your re­ac­tion times and hin­der your con­trol, and could eas­ily cost you or some­one else their life. Re­search shows if you are on the phone when driv­ing your re­ac­tions are 50% slower and your crash risk is four times higher than nor­mal.

This ap­plies to hands-free kits too. De­spite it cur­rently be­ing le­gal in New Zealand to make or take calls us­ing a hands-free kit while driv­ing, re­search proves it's not a safe op­tion. Hands-free kits are al­most as risky as hold­ing the phone to your ear, be­cause it's the dis­trac­tion of the con­ver­sa­tion that's the main dan­ger. The only way to avoid dan­ger­ous dis­trac­tion from your phone is to switch it off, or to silent, and put it out of sight and reach when you're driv­ing.

On long jour­neys, stop for breaks ev­ery two hours, and check your mes­sages then.

You can also help other driv­ers to stay safe by re­fus­ing to speak to some­one on the phone while they're driv­ing. If some­one picks up while they're driv­ing, end the call as quickly as you can. It could save their life. Sourced from

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