Bust any safety myths lately? New findings from a National Safety Council (NSC) poll point toward one misconception many of your workers probably have:
The NSC says 80% of drivers incorrectly believe hands-free cell phones are safer to use when driving than hand-held ones.
Some other results from the NSC poll:
- Of those who admitted using hands-free devices while driving, 70% said they do so for safety reasons.
- 53% of respondents believe hands-free devices must be safe to use if they are built into cars and trucks.
NSC points to more than 30 studies that show hands-free devices are no safer than hand-held ones because the brain is distracted by the phone conversation either way.
“The problem is the brain does not truly multi-task,” said David Teater, senior director of Transportation Initiatives at the NSC. “Just like you can’t read a book and talk on the phone, you can’t safely operate a vehicle and talk on the phone.”
April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. The NSC’s theme this year is “Hands-free is not risk-free.”
The safety organization is urging employers to ban its employees from using cell phones — hand-held and hands-free — while driving for company business.
How one company did it
Owens-Corning has enacted such a ban.
Among the keys to doing that: Real support from the very top of the organization.
Before enacting the ban for the entire company, its CEO went 90 days without using a cell phone while driving.
When it came time to announce the policy, the CEO told his story about how he had just successfully refrained from using a phone while driving, and that it didn’t affect his productivity.
Owens-Corning also recruited some champions for the new policy, including its top sales leaders. These champions helped implement the program among all of the company’s salespeople.
Has your company implemented a cell phone while driving ban? Does it include hands-free calls? Let us know in the comments.