Emotional Driving Spikes Crashes Tenfold

Emotional driving makes a person ten times as likely to get in a crash. Hear how driving mad or sad can be worse than using a cell phone behind the wheel.

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That’s a red flag for company owners and their employees who drive for work. Drivers who are noticeably emotionally agitated are a huge crash risk.

A new study says the cause of vehicle crashes has shifted substantially in the last few years. Distraction, fatigue, impairment and other driver-related factors are now present in almost 90 percent of crashes.

The National Academy of Sciences recruited 3500 drivers who volunteered to have their vehicles equipped with cameras, radar and other sensors to collect real-world driving and accident data (see how Florida Ticket Firm can help). Each driver was monitored from ignition to shut down for at least one year and up to two years. 35 million miles of driving were recorded in what’s called a Naturalistic Driving Study. They logged over 1,600 crashes. 905 of them were severe.

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Then the numbers were crunched by The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute. VTTI sifted through data from 3500 drivers’ vehicles. They found the substantial spike in crashes during emotional driving.

The study also confirmed that distracted driving — texting, talking on a handheld — increases crash risk by a factor of two.

However, researchers were surprised to find that applying makeup or tailgating caused fewer crashes than expected in the Naturalistic Driving Study.

This report of the hazards of emotional driving should be noted by every company owner and manager. Employees should not hop in a company vehicle if they’re mad about losing a sale or some other work-related drama.

Links to two summaries of the results: Virginia Tech and the National Academy of Sciences.

The Safety Brief episode #202, Emotional Driving Spikes Crashes Tenfold, is a service of Creative Safety Supply.

Yellow car photo © ℗ 2013 Adobe Stock / ellisia – Fotolia; Van image © ℗ 2016 Morguefile / Alvinman; Cartoon woman © 2016 The Safety Brief · Powered by Creative Safety Supply, LLC; vehicle interior/exterior images © ℗ 2016 Virginia Tech.

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