Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Talk-based radio is double the distraction for drivers

zurich car insurance

Arguments on the radio are a major cause of distraction for car drivers, according to new research into rush hour journeys.

Nearly 80 per cent of drivers surveyed in the poll by car insurance company Zurich Connect said that the radio was a distraction while they were driving.

Drivers said speech-based radio like the Today Programme on Radio 4 and phone-in debates are twice as distracting as music-based shows.

Mike Quinton from Zurich Connect, said: “Watch out, or a Humphrys harangue could end in a prang.

“Listening to Radio 4 presenters giving politicians a hard time or to your favourite shock jock’s phone-in could mean you are more than twice as likely to take your eye off the road ahead.

“Likewise, beware of the noisy breakfast or drive-time shows that assault you with a non-stop barrage of gags and banter, like Moyles, Theakston or O’Connell.

“The announcement that Chris Evans is taking over from Terry Wogan means the Radio 2 breakfast show distraction rating is likely to go up a few notches. Sir Terry’s blend of middle of the road music and quiet musings contrasts with the Evans maximum-noise formula.

In the poll of more than 2,000 people, 21 per cent of drivers said that the radio doesn’t distract them at all in the car, 23 per cent said they were distracted by music-based programmes and 56 per cent said they were distracted by chat, debate, sport and news programmes.