For most of us, the hand phone has become an integral part of our lives – helping us keep in contact with friends, family and work. But whether you’re expecting a call from your mother, or have just thought of a funny Facebook status update, there is one place where you should definitely not use your hand phone: your car.
With all driving comes a certain level of risk, but if you use your hand phone whilst driving you’re up to 4 times more likely to crash, according to research. That’s significantly worse than someone driving a car at the legal alcohol limit.
Texting and emailing can make reaction times twice as long, and even using your phone with a hands-free kit can reduce your ability to react.
Don’t Risk It
If a phone call, a text or an email is so important to deal with, pull over or park somewhere and do it safely. Otherwise, there is simply no excuse for using your hand phone whilst driving; doing so could be putting your life at risk, as well as the lives of your passengers.
Adrian Pang Drives Home The Message
As part of DirectAsia.com’s campaign to reduce the number of accidents caused by drivers using hand phones, in 2011 we enlisted the help of Adrian Pang and his sons, Xander and Zachary, who starred in a special video directed by Adrian’s wife, Tracie. While the video has an accessibly humorous tone, the message could not be more serious.
The two boys persuade their dad to let them carry out another experiment in his car. Whilst parked up (of course), Zander and Zachary sit in the front seats and Zander pretends to drive. In the passenger seat, Zachery holds yet another delicious looking but fragile cake. Zander, driving with gusto, answers his hand phone… which causes him to swerve: and the delicious cake is launched against the side passenger window.
Singapore Law As Regards Hand Phones and Driving
The Singapore legal system takes a dim view of those caught using their hand phone behind the wheel. With up to a S$1,000 fine and/or 6 months in jail, it simply isn’t worth it. And that’s only for a first offence; those caught a second time may see their fines and/or sentences double.
So remember, if a phone call, text or email is so important to take, read, make or write – park your car safely and then attend to it.
Car Insurance Invalidation
It is also important to understand that your car insurance may be invalidated if you crash while using your hand phone.