A customer using a smartphone

Drivers want technology to block mobile use behind the wheel

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Should cars come with a blocking device to prevent drivers from using their phone? Motorists in the UK support the idea, according to new research by Continental Tyres.

The study of 1,000 UK motorists found that two thirds believe the Government should introduce technology to disable certain phone functions to help ensure safety on the road.

Car with lights flashing byRespondents felt that all cars being fitted with some form of blocking device would be more effective than harsher penalties or more education.

The survey also revealed that many drivers cannot resist the temptation to check their phone while behind the wheel, and 46% believe it is OK to look at their phone when stopped or in slow-moving traffic.

What's more, it's now more common for drivers to read texts, check their social media profiles and view emails than to take or make a phone call. This means that, as well as the distraction in concentration, people are taking their eyes off the road.

Commenting on the findings, Continental Tyres' safety expert Mark Griffiths said: "Our research reveals that drivers know that their use of phones is illegal, distracting and dangerous yet they cannot help themselves.

"Nearly half, 45%, told us they struggle to be digitally disconnected and 28% felt that so many people now checked their mobile in traffic it had become normalised."

In the survey, 66% of motorists said that the Government should require the use of a device to disable web-browsing, emails and the ability to send and receive texts.

Professor John Groeger, a specialist in driver psychology and author of 'Sharing the Driving' for Continental Tyres, said: It is really interesting that motorists want an enforced solution rather than to curb their own behaviour -- yet there is no such system currently being promoted in the UK.
"It is imperative that we find a way to resolve this as the 'switch cost' -- the critical time it takes us to shift our concentration from a task like reading a text to again fully engaging in driving -- is so important in reducing accidents."

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