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Reading or sending text messages behind the wheel is as dangerous as being twice over the drink-drive limit, a new study claims
Scientists from the University of Barcelona and a number of Australian universities compared the effects of cellphone use while driving with the effects of alcohol using a driving simulator.
They measured the reaction times of 12 volunteers who had to keep a steady position on the simulator at speeds of up to 80km/h.
Results showed that road skills dropped by an equal amount for those who were twice over the alcohol limit for driving and those who used their phone to receive or send SMS's.
Controversially, they found a similar result among volunteers who used hands-free kits.
Sumie Leung Shuk Man, co-author of the study published in the journal Traffic Injury Prevention, said: “The use of hands-free devices could also put drivers at risk. Although they should be allowed, they require more research to determine how they should be regulated.' - Daily Mail