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Alcohol and mobile phones

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Colleague Naji Saud Al-Zayd wrote an article in Al-Jarida related to a bold and funny scientific research that was published in 2006 in an international journal called the human factor.
Forty social researchers were chosen to test their car driving skills by means of a driving simulator to measure their concentration while driving without accidents and the first group of the sample was asked to be conscious and not be under the influence of any internal or external stimuli.

The second group was allowed to use a mobile phone and carry it in the hand while driving. The third group was asked to use the fixed mobile phone, without using the hand, and through the earphone. The participants in the fourth group were tested while they were under the influence of alcoholic drinks whose rates are above the permissible level for driving vehicles.
The results were prepared and the number of accidents and violations committed by each group was noted.

Colleague Naji says that he imagined, and this is natural, that the accidents and violations for the group that was under the influence of alcohol, would be the most, but the results showed that the violations of the two groups who were allowed to use the mobile phone while driving, whether it was fixed or using the hand were more than those who were under the influence of alcohol and that the negative impact of using the phone while driving on the number of accidents that were committed, increased five times than those who were tested while they were in a normal condition, and that accidents due to the use of a mobile phone are very high compared to those who never use it while driving.
I, on my part, did more research on this subject, and discovered that several studies were conducted in this field and unanimously agreed on almost the same results. Studies that were made 6 years ago showed that most traffic accidents and violations occurred as a result of four main factors:
Lack of driving experience; Using a mobile phone; Speeding above permissible limit and driving under the influence of intoxicating drinks.
In light of these facts, which may not be hidden from the traffic authorities, we call on the Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior, Major General Jamal Al-Sayegh to tighten enforcement of violations of using the phone while driving, and to use traffic cameras that film such violations with high accuracy.
Government media should also spread awareness and warn against using the phone while driving a vehicle and at gas stations, and place warning posters in public places.
The Ministry of Education should also pay attention to the teaching of such matters in schools.
It is unfortunate to note that the very important traffic issues, and even the theft of public money, do not receive an iota of interest from the forces of religious parties and if drinking was the primary cause of traffic accidents, the streets would be filled with their advertisements, banners, and radio screams with the danger of drinking intoxicants.
This does not mean that we underestimate the danger of driving any machine under the influence of drinks or psychotropic substances, for its danger is certain, but only to show the double standards and hypocrisy of politicized religious parties.

e-mail: a.alsarraf@alqabas.com.kw

By Ahmad alsarraf

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