Do you ever use your cell phone while you’re driving? Don’t think reading your emails, sending a text message or talking on the phone while driving is dangerous? Think again! Here are a few facts from La Capitale’s blog to debunk a few myths for you on the subject!
Myth No. 1: “There are no risks. I can use my phone and concentrate on the road at the same time.”
- According to the SAAQ, using a mobile device while driving reduces the driver’s abilities. This includes the driver’s field of vision, the ability to analyze a situation, react to road hazards and carry out basic tasks (for example, staying in the lane, driving in a straight line or maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles.)
- 80% of automobile collisions occur after only 3 seconds of driver inattention. When you text and drive, your eyes are away from the road for 4 to 6 seconds.
- According to a Virginia Tech Transportation Institute study, people who text while driving are 23 times more likely to be involved in an accident.
- Since automobile accidents you’re involved in over the last 5 years influence the amount of your insurance premium, using your cell phone at the wheel could cause your rates to increase.
Myth No. 2: “Hands-free mode is a safe solution.”
The facts: The simple act of talking on the phone is a source of distraction which considerably reduces your driving attention. Even if their use is authorized by the SAAQ, hands-free devices are still not recommended. To make a call safely, park first in an appropriate location.
Myths Nos. 3 and 4: “I can hold my mobile device while driving if I’m not using it.” and “I can use it when my vehicle is stopped at a red light or stuck in traffic.”
The facts: The law forbids the use of a cell phone or any other portable device designed to transmit or receive information or to be used for entertainment purposes, or to use a display screen while driving a road vehicle in a traffic lane, whether your vehicle is moving or stopped. You can expect a $300 to $600 fine, 5 demerit points and an immediate license suspension of 3 to 30 days if you don’t abide by this law.
Myth No. 5: “I can’t resist using my cell phone when driving.”
Here are a few tricks to help you:
- Turn off your phone before getting into the car.
- Ask someone else to answer your text messages or calls.
- Install the SAAQ mobile phone app Focus Mode, which blocks incoming calls and text messages while you’re driving.
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