Motorists spend 20pc of their time not looking at the road while driving
Drivers take their eyes off the road for almost a fifth of their time behind the wheel, rising to nearly a quarter if they use a satnav, a study has revealed.
Evidence from revolutionary eye-tracking technology shows that drivers take their eyes off the road every nine seconds on average attracted by passing clouds, adverts, scenery and a host of other distractions, the Daily Mail reported.
The results emerged after the researchers took 100 drivers and recorded where their eyes were focused during a 22-minute drive through a city.
Specialist glasses pinpointed the exact focus of the eye by tracking microscopic movements in the cornea.
The experiment was captured on film and enabled researchers to establish exactly where drivers focus their vision.
The study found that on average, drivers spend 18 percent of their time behind the wheel not watching the road.
Those who use satnav devices spend 22 percent of their time focused away from the road.
They spend 12 percent of their time behind the wheel looking at their satnavs and 10 percent on other distractions.
For a driver travelling from London to Brighton, a journey of one and half hours, this is equivalent to 11 minutes with their eyes fixed on their satnav screen.
Average motorists spend 7 percent of their time behind the wheel looking at buildings, clouds and scenery, 0.8 percent of it gazing at adverts, 0.7 percent reading maps, 0.2 percent checking the radio and 0.1 percent looking at their passengers, according to the study.
Only 2 percent of their time is spent looking at oncoming vehicles and 0.6 percent observing road signs.
They spend the same amount of time, 3 percent, watching pedestrians who are not crossing the road as they do checking their mirrors.