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Letter: Distracted drivers caused by new car technology

So much for the state’s rules on driving distractions as we seem to be building them into the newer cars by design.

We’ve been looking for a new car to replace our aging transport and were amazed with the touch screen gimmickry that is built into pretty much all the models we looked at.

The state of Nevada does not allow use of cell phones or hand-held devices to keep the driver’s attention on the road, but all the latest model vehicle incorporate touch screens on the dash whose functions appear to create a same or worse distraction while operating the vehicle.

All models we looked at use the central touch screen to select air conditioning, heating, radio selections, maps and more which require the driver to read the selection, touch the appropriate area then select the mode and levels of each selection.

This would appear to divert the driver’s attention away from the roadway for a significant time and in case of an unexpected traffic change could result in an accident.

The older models used manual switches and dials which could be accessed by feel and did not require the driver’s attention to be shifted for more than a few seconds where the latest designs appear to require the attention to be shifted to select the system, the function, and the desired level needed.

All in all, it would appear we have created a modern system which is designed to require attention to operate and will create a hazardous driving distraction.

Jack Harp

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