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Driving & Logistics

‘Zoom zombies’ a menace on the road

‘Zoom zombies’ a menace on the road

Just when you thought technology couldn’t get any more distracting for drivers, along comes the video conference.

The coronavirus pandemic may have led to fewer vehicles on the road over the past year, but driving could be more dangerous than ever.

With millions of people video calling friends and colleagues every day, there is a worrying number of them who are doing so whilst driving.

According to research by the RAC, one in five under-25s are using FaceTime, Snapchat or WhatsApp at the wheel. The survey also revealed that one in 10 drivers aged 17-24 years say they play games on their phones while driving.

But the risk isn’t just limited to drivers on video calls and games. When someone spends hours in video conferences and then hops into their car, they’re going to struggle to maintain concentration.

It’s a problem that’s caught the attention of auto safety experts, who warn that many drivers are zoning out as a result of these video calls.

According to one expert, we might have honed our use of technology and ability to multitask during the pandemic, “but living-room skills do not translate behind the wheel.”

In October last year, the UK government launched a consultation to tighten laws around the use of mobile phones while driving.

President of the AA, Edmund King, said: “There’s no excuse for picking up a mobile phone when driving, so we’re pleased this loophole will be closed.

“Phones do so much more than calls and texts, so it’s only right that the law is changed to keep pace with technology. Tweets, TikTok and Instagram snaps can all wait until you park up.”

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