Drivers in Wyoming may use Apple CarPlay, but they should know that the system might not be as safe as the makers claim it to be. A study from the U.K.-based safety charity IAM RoadSmart says that drivers exhibit slower reaction times when using the system. According to researchers, drivers are 57% slower when using CarPlay touch controls and 36% slower when using its voice assist.
This makes CarPlay more dangerous than driving while texting, using a hands-free phone, being high on marijuana or being at the U.K.’s drink-drive limit. Drivers who engage in these four activities are 35%, 27%, 21% and 12% slower in their reactions, respectively.
For the study, researchers had 40 drivers in a simulator. Half used CarPlay, and half used the rival system, Android Auto. The drivers traveled a route three times, first without using the systems, second while using the voice assist and lastly while using touch controls. Android Auto’s touch and voice controls increased reaction times 53% and 30%, respectively.
It’s unlikely that drivers will stop using CarPlay, so IAM RoadSmart encourages drivers to complete certain activities, such as programming a destination, before heading out. The study’s authors also encourage Apple to improve CarPlay, for example by disabling certain distracting features when it senses that the vehicle is in motion.
When an auto accident occurs because a driver was distracted by technology, legal action may be warranted. Victims can recover damages as long as their own degree of fault does not exceed 50%, but if they did contribute to the crash, then the amount they recover will be lowered accordingly. To see how strong a case they have, victims may consult a lawyer. Legal counsel could also assist with things like negotiating a settlement.