Dangerous use of mobile phones and other communication devices while driving: A toolbox of counter-measures


The use of mobile phone and similar devices while driving has been a topic of discussion and research for several years. It is now an established fact that driving performance is deteriorated due to distraction but no clear conclusions can yet be drawn concerning influence on crash rates. Better studies on this relationship is needed. Most countries in Europe and many countries elsewhere have introduced different types of bans for handheld devices. Sweden has, however, no such bans. VTI was commissioned by the Swedish Government to outline possible means to reduce the dangerous usage of mobile phones and other communication devices while driving as alternatives to banning. This task was a result of a previous VTI-state-of-the-art review of research on mobile phone and other communication device usage while driving. One of the findings in the review was that bans on handheld phones did not appear to reduce the number of crashes.

Eighteen different countermeasures in three main areas were suggested. (1) Technical solutions such as countermeasures directed towards the infrastructure, the vehicle and the communication device. (2) Education and information, describing different ways to increase knowledge and understanding among stakeholders and different driver categories. (3) Different possibilities for how society, industry and organisations can influence the behaviour of individuals, via policies, rules, recommendations and incentives. Our conclusion is that a combination of different countermeasures is needed – where education and information to the drivers are combined with support and incentives for a safe usage of different communication devices.



Millions for research into maritime transport and the environment

Maritime transport is a major source of emissions of harmful air pollutants and carbon dioxide. In a new project, a research team from the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI) and the University of Gothenburg has received SEK 6.4...


New research programme for more efficient travel

The Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI) is playing an important role in a major new research programme to find radical solutions leading to fewer trips and more efficient travel, along with tools to enable better use of roads and...


Simulator used to practice emergency responses safely

Emergency responses of the police, ambulance, and rescue services are associated with a high risk of accidents, but practicing them in real traffic is neither safe nor permissible. A simulator-based method developed by the Swedish National Road and Transport...


Simulation of cut-in by manually driven vehicles in platooning scenarios

A study in a VTI-driving simulator has showed that a platoon will be able to handle a cut in from a manually driven car. The results of this study have recently been presented at two conferences in Japan.



The five-year anniversary of European Road Profile Users' Group (ERPUG) Forum will take place at Ramboll head quarter, Copenhagen, Denmark October 19-20, 2017.


Self-driving buses in Sweden next year?

A self-driving, fossil-free bus. This idea might become reality through a forthcoming collaborative project involving the Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI), Linköping University and several other participants. The project group aim...