Sat-navs are the cause of bad driving according to a study
Many of us are aware when driving with a satellite navigation system, it tends to lead you somewhere else and you end up back-tracking and soon enough, you find yourself back where you started.
Though sat-navs may lead you to the wrong places, they are also said to be the cause of bad driving in a recent study by academics at Lancaster University and Royal Holloway, University of London. Drivers are said to be distracted by having to listen to sat-navs.
Dr Polly Dalton, from the Department of Psychology at Royal Holloway, said: “What is interesting is that people were able to follow one simple instruction without any significant impact on their driving. But as soon as they had to remember a compound instruction, consisting of two sequential directions, we began to notice a difference in their driving ability. A lot of effort has gone into designing visually friendly sat-nav devices but our research highlights the importance of the way in which the auditory instructions are given.”
The study has also shown that people drive faster when trying to follow complicated sat-nav instructions. Sat-navs also cause drivers to pay more attention to the instructions, rather than keeping an eye on the roads and pedestrians.
Dr Pragya Agarwal, from Lancaster University, said: “The results from our research have implications for the way these systems can be designed to be more effective and user-friendly. With the increasing reliance on technology for navigation, it is important that such technology is designed so that it supports, rather than detracts us from our primary task of driving.”