If you wear your phone's headset while driving to send voice-activated text messages, you may be putting yourself and other drivers in danger. A new study from researchers at the Texas Transportation Institute at Texas A&M University found that sending text messages via voice while driving is just as dangerous as texting with fingers.
About 35 percent of drivers admit to reading a text or email while driving and 26 percent admit to typing one, according to data from AAA, a national drivers' organization.
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The team, lead by Christine Yager, compared voice-to-text and traditional texting on a handheld device in an actual driving environment. They asked 43 participants to first drive along a test track without any electronic devices present and then repeat the drive while texting and then finally send text messages while using a speech-to-text device.
While texting, whether with fingers or by voice, a driver's eye contact with the road decreased and the response times was significantly delayed. According to Yager, drivers took about twice as long to react as they did when they weren't texting.