'Selfies' a road safety issue

'Selfies' a road safety issue

Nov 27, 2013

'Selfies' a road safety issue

On Tuesday the researchers behind the Oxford Dictionaries announced 'selfie' as its word of the year. Whether this is a good or a bad thing is up to you but it could have been worse; also under consideration was the word 'twerk'!

Dictionary inclusions aside, there is no doubt that selfies have gained in popularity in 2013, which has also led to the worrying introduction of the driving selfie. If a selfie is fairly self-explanatory then so too should be the driving selfie, but for those in the cheap seats it means taking a picture of yourself, while driving.

A quick search of related hashtags #carselfie, #driving and #drivinghome shows how popular these pictures have become, but the largest car insurer in the US has warned that taking such a picture is putting lives at risk.

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), on average it takes two seconds to take a selfie, which equates to your eyes being off the road for nearly half a football field length. Now American football fields are different lengths to those we are used to in Ireland, but that is still quite a distance and only covers the actual taking of a selfie. If you want to share that picture via Twitter, Facebook or Instagram your eyes are likely to be off the road long enough to do a lap of any NFL football field.

"You can certainly kill yourself as well as kill other people as well," said Rolayne Fairclough from AAA before urging drivers to not "let that driving selfie or video be the last photo you ever take."

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