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Driving and Talking in the San Francisco Bay Area

San Francisco Bay area attorney Boone Callaway discusses statistics that highlight the dangers of texting and talking while operating an automobile.

Like many of us, I am still finding my way to a safe personal driving and talking policy here in San Francisco. Of course, California law now prohibits using a handset while driving, but we are one of just seven states with this restriction. Is it safe to talk and drive, even using a speakerphone or headset? The New York Times online has an entire section devoted to articles on the risks of driving and talking.

Research Indicates Talking While Driving May Impair Driver’s Brain

A U.S. News & World Report piece points to research that indicates that talking while driving can impair the brain’s ability to process what a driver is seeing by 50%. Many reports are linking cellphone use with San Francisco car accidents . This piece also cites an interesting statistic: at any given time, about 11% of drivers are on the phone. A Wired Magazine online piece featured tests that showed only 1 in 40 drivers retained their full ability to reach quickly to changing road conditions while talking and driving. But those “supertaskers” were able to perform competently on driving tests while talking, leading the magazine to emphasize that for some drivers, talking and driving pose no added risk of harm.

Study Says Only 1 in 40 Drivers is Able to Be On The Phone Without Being Impaired

Combining these two statistics — the 11% of drivers being on the phone, and the 1-in-40 who can so do without impaired driving ability — highlights the danger of combining the two. Of courses, many of us would like to think that we are that 1 in 40. It would be interesting to see how many people in a survey felt that they were among the “supertaskers” that Wired cites.

Based on my experiences, I don’t think that I’m one of them. I have noticed that my driving attention suffers when I am on the phone. I have decided to avoid driving and talking while here in San Francisco, or any urban area.

Talk to a San Francisco Personal Injury Attorney For Free

The personal injury lawyers at Callaway & Wolf have handled many multi-million dollar accident cases around the Bay Area, including ones in Marin, San Francisco, and Alameda counties. Contact us now for a free initial consultation.

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