International News Desk – At Home: Driver, Distracted – Around the World: Laptop Woes

International News Desk – At Home: Driver, Distracted – Around the World: Laptop Woes

At Home: Driver, Distracted

It’s no secret that distracted driving is responsible for the majority of automobile crashes and collisions. But a recent survey suggests that although not many Canadians admit to engaging in these practices, they’re still allowing themselves to become distracted while on the road.

As the CBC reports, the Allstate-conducted survey discovered that ?three-quarters of Canadians are distracted while driving.?

And although only eight per cent of respondents admitted to texting while driving, a majority said that they engaged in other distracting practices, like adjusting their radio or iPod or eating or drinking while behind the wheel. At the same time, the respondents were often ?quick to condemn? distracted driving.

Looking away from the road for even just a few seconds can be significant, particularly when travelling at high speeds: ?when drivers take their eyes off the road for only five seconds at 90 km/h, their vehicle has travelled the length of a football field.?

As Allstate’s Saskia Matheson told reporters, ?Our research shows that Canadians do not fully understand what is considered to be a distraction while driving and continue to engage in those dangerous behaviours.?

Around the World: Laptop Woes

Enjoy relaxing on the couch with your laptop computer? You might reconsider doing so, given recent studies; although notebook computers are commonly called laptops, the best place for them to rest may not actually be on top of your lap.

As the CBC reports, recent research from Switzerland suggests that ?working with a laptop on your lap could lead to ?toasted skin syndrome?.?

The condition, ?also . . . caused by the long-term use of heating pads,? is noticeable as ?discoloured sponge-patterned skin,? which over time may remain permanently darkened.

While no link between laptops and skin cancer has yet been established, the skin damage caused by overuse of the heat-emitting laptops could possibly lead to cancer, according to the researchers.

And laptop temperatures as high as 52 degrees Celsius have been reported. That’s significant enough to cause long-term damage.

Fortunately, the solution is easy: a ?heat shield? placed between the laptop and the skin will protect the body from heat-related damage.

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