7% of Belgian drivers watch video behind the wheel

Seven out of a hundred Belgian drivers admit to watching video films behind the wheel at least once a month. That is what a recent survey traffic safety institute Vias organized among 6 000 Belgians revealed.

In Flanders, 5% of car drivers say they sometimes watch a video in the car; in Wallonia, it is 8%, and in Brussels even 16%. Most popular are sports events and series. “Dangerous behavior,” says Vias’ spokesman, Stef Willems, “because the cognitive distraction is enormous, especially when people also read subtitling.”

Driving blind

Suppose you drive on a highway at 120 km/hour. Then, looking away at a video for five seconds means you cover 160 meters without looking at the road. “This can have serious consequences,” Willems says.

According to traffic regulations, any driver must be able to perform all necessary driving movements and must be in control of his vehicle at all times. So, whoever is caught can be fined on that basis. “Watching video films at the wheel is a third-degree violation that will cost 174 euros plus administration costs, concludes Willems.



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