IAM RoadSmart has taken the wraps off its latest video advising of the consequences of drivers getting distracted behind the wheel of a car.
The light hearted video stars former Formula 1 test driver and current GT racer Darren Turner, and shows him at the wheel of a racing simulator trying not to get distracted by a small child, a dog and a ringing mobile phone as he tackles a challenging race circuit.
IAM RoadSmart’s video highlights an issue which is proving to be an increasing problem. Figures from the Department for Transport in 2013 found 2,995 cases where distraction in the vehicle was listed as a contributory factor to accidents.
IAM RoadSmart’s report, The Battle for Attention, further highlighted the extent of this issue and the most recent Department of Transport study shows 1.6 per cent of drivers in England and Scotland were observed using a hand-held mobile phone whilst driving.
And IAM RoadSmart’s award-winning Safely Home campaign surveyed 1,500 drivers with one in 10 admitting to causing a crash because they were distracted.
- The survey found the most common distractions were:
- Children in the car (29%)
- Changing the radio channel (27%)
- Back seat drivers (26%)
- Mobile phone use (24%)
- Satellite-navigation system (15%)
- Attractive pedestrians, drivers or passengers (14%)
The new video aims to highlight a serious issue but present it in an amusing way, showing that even a professional racing driver could lose concentration and potentially have a crash.
Darren said: “I thought it would be easy to ignore a child or a barking dog, and easily be able to take a phone call and keep driving safely. But this isn’t the case. Losing concentration for even two seconds could lead to pretty serious consequences. If a professional driver can have their attention diverted, anyone can.”
Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, added: “No matter how good a driver you are it is very easy to have your focus shifted away from the job in hand.
“We all have things on our mind, places to go and things to do – it’s only human. But it is so important to realise driving is a full-time task and not one to be combined with other things. Multi-tasking is expected in many walks of life, but it simply doesn’t apply on the road – no one can do two things at once if one of them is driving.”
The new video can be seen on IAM RoadSmart’s Youtube channel. You can watch it here:https://youtu.be/ldNOskBcm90.