Monday, 10 Dec, 2007 Science
14
votes

Hard-Rock and Classic Music Could Lead to Road Accidents, New Survey Says

Share

According to a new survey, conducted by British researchers, listening to certain types of music while driving could cause accidents. Scientists claim that some music genres in some cases are directly related to some serious car accidents. Among such dangerous music types are named hard-rock, hip-hop and classic music. However, drivers disagree with this statement as they say music helps them concentrate on the road.

British psychologists have come to the conclusion that a driver's concentration on the road depends directly on the type of music he/she listens to. They arranged a series of experimental situations, in which drivers, where supposed to listen to different types of music while driving. These experiments showed that listening to silent music did not affect the driver, as thought there was no music playing at all. On the other hand drivers where unconsciously gaining speed and paid less attention to the road when fast and emotional music played.

Psychologists from other countries, namely from Russia say that it is a well known fact that acoustic vibrations have a certain effect on the human body. Elena Rusalkina, deputy director of Russian Institute of Ecopsychology says that "hard" music makes a person more aggressive and this person would subconsciously tend to put out this aggression by gaining speed in order to raise the adrenaline level in the blood.

Some experts are of opinion that too much silent and steady music is also not the best solution for the road as it can calm the driver to such condition, that he/she will lose control over the road. Thus another Russian specialist in psychology, Maxim Levi, makes a contrary suggestion. He says that drivers should listen to rhythmical and fast music to create a sense of motion.

Despite the fact that British researchers relate the music playing in the car at the time of the accident with the accident itself, the police treated this statement with skepticism, since there is no statistical data to be found on what music played in a specific vehicle at the moment of the accident. Moreover, there are no documents to regulate what type of music should be allowed or disallowed for listening during driving.

Insurance companies from the US conducted a survey among drivers who like listening to music in the car. The survey showed that 65% of the questioned drivers claimed they were more concentrated on the road while listening to their favorite music; 14% said that there were some compositions, which made them step violently the gas pedal; only 9% said that music distracts their attention from the road.

Psychologists claim that listening to music while driving is a positive thing, yet there is no statistical data to show how many night accidents where avoided because drivers were listening to the radio during long distance driving.

We often see young people, who jerk their limbs to the rhythm of the music in their earphones. Experts consider that such people could react inadequately to the music while on the road.

Thus even thought this research of the British scientists is very helpful, people, whose behavior depends a lot on the music they listen, should make a decision themselves, whether should or should not take the wheel.

Powered by www.infoniac.com

Comments:

7 votes

//5 Nov 10, 2010 06:44 AM | posted by: nick air jordan jumpman p
If sufficient data is collected it might be possible to statistically correlate and help determine not only whether certain types of music or volume have impact on the abilities of driver's to drive better - but it will be empirical evidence of direct cause for accidents.
8 votes

//4 Dec 17, 2009 07:45 AM | posted by: Andre
I know this is an old article, but I only found this now and I have to leave my two cents worth...

I don't think anybody can safely say that music does or doesn't cause accidents; every type of music has an effect of some sorts on everybody, whether good or bad depends on the person, not the music. I listen to and enjoy a wide variety of genres, top of my list being heavy metal (Atreyu, Chimaira, etc.), and depending on my mood at that time it either makes me grin from ear to ear and 'drum' my steering wheel, or very occasionally makes me feel like driving fast.

There are so many factors that I don't think people actually take into account when doing these surveys; imagine placing a death-metal fan in a car with classical music playing? Or take an Elton John listener and give him/her Enya to listen to on a 45-min trip?

As far as I'm concerned, the only factor in this equation that can reliably be attributed to 'music causing accidents' is the volume. It's a known fact that other cars can definitely hear you coming from a mile away when your 18" subs are blasting out every beat at mind-blowing volumes, but how can the people IN that car hear anything around them?
7 votes

//3 Nov 21, 2008 10:31 PM | posted by: summer_rain [InfoMANIAC]
Why don't they investigate on other more important factors leading to car accidents, such as talking on mobile phones during driving for example? yeah, music may have a certain part here too( classic music makes you sleepy, hard rock on the contrary excites you too much), but, in my opinion, these are just minor damaging factors since they don't have such a big influence on human consciousness, on the contrary, they have more impact on subconsciousness.
9 votes

//2 Dec 26, 2007 05:05 PM | posted by: givoly [InfoTOT]
The research above still seems incomplete to me. It doesn't clearly show whether soft/monotonous music would be more likely to make a driver drowsy or not, for instance. Too often I see radio stations broadcast at night soft music - one might hypohthesize that such music would tend to make a driver listening to it more drowsy, less alert, and hence, more likely to be involved in a car accident.

One method to complete this research might be to document what was playing in cars at the time of accidents. Was the radio on? what was the volume? was it playing in-car content (CD/DVD/etc.) or broadcast? if broadcast, was it playing a radio channel, if so, what was that channel playing, at the time of the accident and in the few minutes prior? if in-car audio, what was it playing?

If sufficient data is collected it might be possible to statistically correlate and help determine not only whether certain types of music or volume have impact on the abilities of driver's to drive better - but it will be empirical evidence of direct cause for accidents.

The power of such findings could be a clearly preventative form of accidents. If we know what sorts of music (or audio sources) are less likely to produce accidents, people would be able to "tune into them" when driving. Likewise, radio stations listened to often by drivers might focus on airing different content dependent on the time of day in order to reduce their impact on car accidents (if such an impact exists).
8 votes

//1 Dec 26, 2007 03:51 PM | posted by: Tal Givoly
One method to complete this research might be to document what was playing in cars at the time of accidents. Was the radio on? what was the volume? was it playing in-car content (CD/DVD/etc.) or broadcast? if broadcast, was it playing a radio channel, if so, what was that channel playing, at the time of the accident and in the few minutes prior? if in-car audio, what was it playing?

If sufficient data is collected it might be possible to statistically correlate and help determine not only whether certain types of music or volume have impact on the abilities of driver's to drive better - but it will be empirical evidence of direct cause for accidents.

The power of such findings could be a clearly preventative form of accidents. If we know what sorts of music (or audio sources) are less likely to produce accidents, people would be able to "tune into them" when driving. Likewise, radio stations listened to often by drivers might focus on airing different content dependent on the time of day in order to reduce their impact on car accidents (if such an impact exists).

Add your comment:



antispam code




TOP 10 NEWS

Blogs

Archive

Information

Discover, share, comment and discuss with us on a variety of interesting stories. A lot of fascinating things are taking place every day around the globe and we welcome you to this world.