One-fourth of Walloons send text or e-mails while driving, says AWSR

Belgium, Europe: A total of one-fourth of Walloons send text or e-mails while driving their vehicles, albeit occasionally, a study by the Walloon Agency for Road Safety (AWSR) has announced.

The statistic is alarming. As explained by the AWSR, “1 SMS = 200m without seeing the road.”

Moreover, even at low speeds (50kmph), taking your eyes off the road for even one second means that you travel 1 meter blind. At high speeds (120kmph), this increases to 33 meters, including almost two as well as half times longer than the length of the average lorry.

As per the AWSR, distracted driving accounts for up to 25 percent of accidents on Belgium’s roads. 

Along with this, this can come in many different forms. Be it rubbernecking, looking at a car entertainment system, eating at the wheel, driving with a hot coffee in between your legs, or even blasting music so loud that you cannot hear traffic noise around you.

In addition, By far the largest source of distraction though is mobile phones. One in five Walloons uses their telephone behind the wheel, at least occasionally. One in four occasionally sends texts while driving.

The majority of the men and women use their mobile phones while driving as well as 58 percent of the male admit to driving with their phones while driving with their phones in their hand. Young men are the worst offenders. Almost half, 47 percent of 18-34-year-old Belgian men text while driving than to just 3 percent of those aged over 55. 

Meanwhile, one of Twenty Walloons has admitted to taking part in video conferences behind the while. For executives, this figure rises to one in six.

“This is especially dangerous: not only does it take the driver’s attention away from the road by forcing him to focus on the conversation and possibly respond, but it also stops him from looking at the road.”


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