Wed, Aug 23, 2006 - Page 15 News List

Don't phone and drive 行車中勿打電話

A car parked in a waiting area at Washington Dulles Airport in the US.一輛車停在美國華盛頓杜勒斯國際機場的等候區。 (照片:法新社)

PHOTO: AFP

Driving while chatting on a hands-free cellular phone is just as dangerous as driving while holding a mobile phone, according to a study conducted by the University of Utah in the US.

Talking while driving — even while using a hands-free device — makes drivers four times more likely to have an accident, according to David Strayer, a University of Utah psychology professor who led the study. The study was conducted by tracking drivers' brain activity.

Strayer said chatting on a cellphone while driving cuts the brain's ability to operate a car and process information about traffic by 50 percent.

The study asked 16 pairs of friends to “drive” using a highway-driving simulator while chatting on the phone. Meanwhile, the scientists tracked the brain's activity and eye movements as a variety of situations cropped up, from a car braking suddenly to one abruptly changing lanes and disrupting the flow of traffic.

In each instance, the brain's ability to react was cut in half.

Strayer noted, however, that a telephone conversation does not have the same impact as a conversation with an adult passenger. When driving with a passenger, the driver “has an interest in driving safely. He can say ‘I should stop talking.’”

Cellphones have been outlawed for motorists in only a half-dozen US states, according to the researcher.(AFP)

根據美國猶他大學的一項研究顯示,駕車時以免持聽筒手機交談,跟手持行動電話一樣危險。

主持這項研究的猶他大學心理學教授大衛.史崔爾指出,駕駛邊開車邊聊天,即便是使用免持聽筒裝置,發生意外的機率是一般駕駛的四倍。這份研究以追蹤駕駛的大腦活動進行。

史崔爾表示,開車時以手機聊天會使大腦操控車輛的能力及處理交通資訊的能力下降50%。

這份研究要求十六對友人在公路駕駛模擬器上邊「開車」邊聊天,同時,科學家在各種路況出現時追蹤駕駛的大腦活動和眼球運動。路況從緊急煞車到突然變換車道及阻亂車流都有。

大腦在各項狀況的反應能力均減半。

然而史崔爾也表示,電話交談產生的影響不同於和車上的成年乘客交談,駕駛車上若有乘客「就會願意小心開車,他可以說『我應該停止交談』」。

Today's Words 今天單字

1. track v.t.

追蹤 (zhui1 zong1)

例: Our teacher keeps a chart to track our progress over the year.

(我們老師以圖表追蹤我們一年來的進步。)

2. process v.t.

處理 (chu2 li3)

例: When you send in an application for a visa, sometimes it takes several weeks for your documents to be processed.

(申請簽證時,有時需要幾個星期處理文件。)

3. abruptly adv.

突然地 (tu2 ran2 di5)

例: Sarah was talking when Ralph abruptly interupted.

(莎拉在講話時羅夫突然插嘴。)

4. impact n.

影響 (ying2 xiang3)

例: The cold weather has had a hugely negative impact on ice cream sales.

(天冷已對冰淇淋的銷售產生極為負面的影響。)


研究人員表示,美國只有六州禁止駕駛使用手機。



(法新社╱翻譯︰鄭湘儀)

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