This distressing new research that underscores how profoundly distracting cell phone use (even anticipated use) can be was presented this week as part of the Pediatric Academic Societies annual meeting held in Boston. Here’s the news release:
New research…shows that even anticipating calls or messages may distract drivers, increasing the risk of a crash.
Jennifer M. Whitehill, PhD, postdoctoral fellow at Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center at the University of Washington, and her colleagues sought to determine whether compulsive cell phone use is associated with motor vehicle crashes. They enlisted undergraduate students to complete the Cell Phone Overuse Scale (CPOS), a 24-item instrument that assesses four aspects of problematic cell phone use: 1) frequent anticipation of calls/messages, 2) interference with normal activities (e.g., impacting friends/family), 3) a strong emotional reaction to the cell phone and 4) recognizing problem use.