Research shows hands-free phones just as risky - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Research shows hands-free phones just as risky

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- Researchers say that like it or not, when someone is talking to you, your brain is listening, processing and thinking about what's being said -- even when you're in the driver's seat trying to concentrate on traffic.

Studies show that's why drivers get distracted during cellphone conversations, even on hands-free phones.

It's also part of the reason the National Transportation Safety Board went ahead this week with a recommendation officials know a lot of drivers won't like -- that states ban hands-free, as well as handheld, cellphone use while driving.

NTSB chairman Deborah Hersman told reporters it's not where your hands are, but where your mind is that counts.

The board has been swamped with calls, emails and tweets from drivers both praising and condemning the action.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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