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Drivers distracted 45 per cent of the time behind the wheel

Australian drivers are distracted for 45 per cent of the time behind the wheel, according to the first results of a landmark research project.

As reported in The Age, the study filmed hundreds of motorists over nearly two million kilometres, finding drivers are distracted by something other than the road every 96 seconds.

Professor Ann Williamson, director of Transport and Road Safety Research Centre at University of New South Wales and co-author of the study told Ross and John distractions include mobile phones, talking to passengers and people doing personal grooming.

“We’re saying 45 per cent of the time drivers were actually doing something else as well as driving,” Professor Williamson said.

“Where the secondary activity means that I’m taking my attention, particularly my visual attention away from scanning the road, then we have an increased risk.”

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