There have been studies in the past showing that when certain kinds of people listen to certain kinds of radio, they can get distracted.
For example – in 2009, a study by Britain’s University of Leicester put soccer fans and non-soccer fans in a driving simluator and had them listen to a socccer game.
They found that when the match got exciting, the soccer fans driving behavior became erratic – with the drivers changing speed, and driving too close to the car in front.
Where as the non-soccer fans listening to the same broadcast were unfazed.
And now there’s yet another study on radio listening and driving – this one testing the effect of music.
A Dutch researcher at the University of Groningen put 47 students in a driving simulator and had them listen to their favorite playlist. She found that – not only did the music not impair their ability to safely follow the car in front – but those who drove with their favorite music actually responded to changing conditions faster than those driving without music. And the louder the music, the better!
It’s important to note – they were asked to pick favorite and familiar songs – not something jarring and strange so – you want to be careful.
By the way, scientists still have not determined the effect on drivers of gripping radio commentary – but not to worry – with today’s piece I’m done for the week so, on your way.