Eating at the Wheel Doubles Driving Accident Rates

10.07.2007

Researchers at Brunel University have shown that drivers are more likely to have a collision when trying to eat whilst driving in their research entitled Crash dieting: The effects of eating and drinking on driving performance'.

It is not currently against the law for people to eat or drink whilst driving, however prosecutions can arise if Police consider drivers not to have been in full control whilst snacking.

Drivers used a driving simulator while eating. In a simulated emergency, those drivers eating whilst driving crashed nearly twice as many times as those people not eating whilst driving.

The researchers said the results indicate that whilst drivers might be able to eat and drink under normal driving conditions, when faced with an emergency situation they are less able to cope.

David Urpeth a Partner with law firm Irwin Mitchell said "All drivers need to be aware of the dangers of limiting the amount of attention they give whilst undertaking such a potentially dangerous activity as driving, at whatever speed. Employers must also realise their responsibility to their workforce who may be asked to drive as part of their job.