OK, USA Today (that bastion of science) is now presenting research that even just listening to a hand-free cellphone is distracting to drivers.
Here’s my question: Where is the research that quantifies the distraction that comes from talking to passengers (or dealing with screaming kids in the backseat)? Where is the research that quantifies the distraction that comes from listening to the radio (either music or talk radio)? Where is the research that shows that merely listening on a cellphone, hands-free, is more distracting than passengers or radios?
I ask this because, unless we’re going ban carrying passengers or having radios in cars… which we don’t seem to be doing… then we shouldn’t be talking about banning activities that are no more distracting than what we permit. Sometimes, I think the folks doing science like this don’t understand science or risk.