Over the years, the National Safety Council (NSC) has warned consumers of the dangers of talking on their cell phone while driving. And during the recent Distracted Driving Awareness Month, the NSC highlighted the surprising fact that hands-free devices are no safer, because the brain remains distracted by the conversation. And it goes without saying, of course, that texting while driving can be deadly.
But what about the new smart watches? The NSC has just released this statement:
The National Safety Council is concerned about the risks of using a smart watch, such as the newly released Apple Watch, while driving. Numerous studies have shown that drivers using cell phones significantly increase their risk of being involved in a crash. Smart watches, which have capabilities similar to smart phones, could be even riskier, according a study conducted in the U.K.
Drivers wearing smart watches can call, text, email and surf the web, but the watch also vibrates when it receives a notification. That vibration could be very difficult to ignore; a natural impulse will be to look at our wrist. This could take a driver’s eyes off the road and mind off the drive—a recipe for disaster.
The Council urges everyone who purchases a smart watch to turn it off or remove it before driving. All calls can kill, and no text, email or social media update is worth a life.
Source: The National Safety Council, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. Visit the National Safety Council website (www.nsc.org) to find safety education information for consumers and experts.