Published On: Wed, May 4th, 2016

Listening to FM during driving is also hazardous



A study has warned that listening to traffic reports on the radio can be so risky for your driving that you can even miss an elephant standing by the side of the road.

Gillian Murphy, who is the lead researcher of University College Cork in Ireland, stated that “Anything that draws our attention away from driving can be problematic, even if it’s auditory like listening to the radio or having a hands-free phone conversation,”

The researcher uses a well-known theory of attention, Perceptual Load Theory, to driving, a mission where attention is critical.

Perceptual Load Theory tells that we have a limited sum of attention and that once that ability is hit the highest point, we cannot practice anything else.

To analysis, whether giving attention to radio traffic reports can be awful for our driving, Murphy said 36 people to drive a route in a full-sized driving simulator whereas listening to traffic information on the radio.

As driving, 18 participants were said to accomplish an easy mission and 18 to accomplish a difficult mission. The easy mission was to listen for when the voice providing the information altered gender. The difficult mission was to listen for news of a specific road.

The study revealed that just 23 percent of the drivers undertaking the difficult mission observed much, unanticipated visual spur — an elephant or gorilla by the side of the road.

By distinguishing, 71 percent of the drivers undertaking the easy mission observed it.

Drivers undertaking the difficult mission were as well bad at following road symbols, recalling which vehicle had now passed them and even at driving itself. Their speed, lane site and response times to perils were all affected.

The results were showed at the British Psychological Society’s annual conference in Nottingham in Britain.

Murphy further stated that “Road safety campaigns are so focused on telling us to keep our eyes on the road, and this is certainly important, but this research tells us that it’s simply not enough. We should focus on keeping our brains on the road,”

About the Author

Sidra Muntaha

- Sidra Tul Muntaha is a journalist (MA-Mass Communication and M.Phil in Mass Communication) based in Lahore. She is working as an editor at fashion, style and entertainment in the section of the Kooza. She writes fashion and entertainment articles for The Kooza News.

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