Sacramento, CA -- The California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS)says studies show brain function decreases by 37 percent when talking on the phone while driving -- even when using a hands-free device.
The OTS cited studies describing a condition known as "inattentional blindness" in which the eyes see the road, but the brain is unable to process all necessary information due to the person being occupied with conversation.
While hands-free talking is legal, the OTS still suggests turning off the phone while driving due to the dangers of inattentional blindness.
April is National Distracted Driver Awareness Month.
Traffic safety officials urge drivers take safety one step further and hang up their phones entirely.