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DATE News (chronologically)
12/19/12
automotive
A smartphone might not be the safest present for young drivers this Christmas  More than 7 million people are likely to receive a smartphone this Christmas, but new research by Goodyear reveals that the majority of young drivers are likely to put themselves in danger by using their new devices at the wheel.

Novice drivers are naturally more at risk of becoming dangerously distracted, with smartphone use only likely to exacerbate the issue. The Goodyear poll reveals how youngsters continue to phone, text and surf the web even when they are at the wheel: 45% admit to speaking on the phone while driving and 68% have seen their friends phoning while at the wheel. The survey, which probed the behavior of 6400 young drivers, 25 years of age and below, in 16 markets (15 European countries and South Africa), was designed to get inside the brain of the young driver and provides some interesting insights into the online generation on the road.

The survey revealed a host of distractions competing for the attention of today's young drivers as they climb into their cars. Despite the fact that it is illegal in most countries, 44% speak on the phone without using a handset or hands-free while driving. Considered as more dangerous than phoning on the road, texting was also highlighted: 41% of newly qualified drivers admit to having sent texts, emails or using messenger services while driving.

Knowing that this distraction is a growing issue, Goodyear will be working with the European Driving Schools Association to provide young people with more training on driving safely and responsibly on the road.

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