Driven to distraction


Sir, –There is little doubt in my mind that the phenomenon of “distracted driving” poses the biggest danger to me as a daytime road user.

In my daily commute, I regularly see erratic driving by someone using their phone or making adjustments to dials on the car’s dashboard as they drive.

Cars nowadays have too many built-in distractions, including radio, a USB port, satellite navigation maps, bluetooth, telephone brackets, dashboard cameras and an amazing array of warning lights and buzzers.

In addition, cars come with drinks holders deliberately designed and placed to allow a motorist to drink coffee while driving. It is increasingly difficult to keep one’s eyes on the road. We need a debate as to how much these distractions are contributing to road accidents and whether we really need all this in-car technology.

As a general principle, technological advances are a good thing when they improve our lives, but if technology contributes to road deaths there is no reason why we should adopt it.

I suggest that we should now institute a total ban on the use of mobile phones, navigation systems and drinks holders while we are behind the wheel of a car.

Until we accept, in a real way, that the motorcar is a lethal instrument, the use of which needs total concentration, we will never solve the road death issue. – Yours, etc,



Co Meath.