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Infotainment systems found to be distracting for drivers

Drivers in Colorado should be aware that numerous studies are being undertaken to shed light on how technology affects driving behavior. MIT researchers, for example, have been analyzing the effect of automated features like Tesla's Autopilot for years now. One company has been equipping fleet vehicles with cameras as a way to obtain information on, and prevent, road incidents.

Most recently, a AAA analysis conducted by researchers at the University of Utah has come up with some interesting conclusions. Researchers made an experiment where 64 people drove five different vehicles and used the infotainment systems that were built into them. The vehicles were a 2017 Honda Ridgeline RTL-E, 2017 Ford Mustang GT, 2018 Chevrolet Silverado LT, 2018 Kia Optima and 2018 Ram 1500 Laramie.

At other points in the test, participants used Android Auto or Apple CarPlay, which are interfaces that run off a smartphone. Researchers found that these interfaces were less distracting than the built-in infotainment systems. Of the two interfaces, Android Auto demanded less attention when drivers were entering a destination. The text messaging function on CarPlay proved to be not as distracting as the other's.

Still, both demanded moderately high levels of attention. It remains to be seen how manufacturers can improve the driving experience, especially for young drivers, who tend to be the most distracted.

As technology develops and requires less and less driver input, it can lead to drivers to become careless or even reckless. Distracted driving would be an example of carelessness, so when it leads to an accident, victims may be able to file a claim. A lawyer might be able to evaluate the case and proceed to build it up with proof gathered by investigators. After factoring in any comparative negligence, the lawyer can strive for a fair settlement with the defendant's auto insurance company.

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