Make the right call on for your phone while driving
Whether you use a hands-free set or not, you cannot safely do two things at once
A FEW lines in an article in one of our sister publications worried me. A young and vibrant businesswoman was recounting her day and in doing so, told of her 25-minute drive to the office in the morning. She had a hands-free phone set but always made a number of calls on her way.
Now that might be a far better option in some people's minds than being bored – or more likely, depressed – by Morning Ireland but it isn't a safe one.
Whether you are using a hands-free set or not, you cannot do two things at once – run your business and drive a car. That is especially so in the morning when other drivers are likely to be suffering from tiredness, hangovers or are similarly distracted by their phones. That's also not taking into account all the children travelling to school and the many dangers that brings. I don't want to be a nag but making those calls could be a killer. Rather, put on some nice music and get there safely and, I bet, more relaxed and in better shape for the day.
Meanwhile, there was some good news in the new SIMI/DoneDeal National Motoring Survey which was launched last Thursday and reflected ongoing recovery. The review also highlighted several other areas for optimism by motorists.
The price of petrol is 5.3 per cent lower than the first quarter in 2013, while the price of diesel is down by 4.7 per cent in the same period. Motor taxation costs remained the same in the budget while the cost of buying a new car was down by 2.7 per cent, compared to the same period in 2013. However, there was an increase in insurance with premiums going up by 4.4 per cent since March 2013.
The review shows a significant upturn in the motor industry compared to previous years and the first quarter has already shown a cause for optimism within the industry in Ireland. New car sales have increased by 27 per cent for Q1 of 2014 compared with the same period last year.
Economist Jim Power,, who compiled the review based on information from SIMI and DoneDeal.ie, said: "All in all, having experienced a dramatic decline in its fortunes, the motor industry is back in growth mode again and confidence within the industry is currently stronger than it has been for some time. This is important for national and regional economic activity, employment and Exchequer receipts."
Already this year, the Irish Exchequer has benefitted to the tune of €453.7m from new car sales. This is five per cent of the total tax take for the country in the first three months of the year. The strongest growth in new car sales in Ireland was in Leitrim, which saw an increase of 57.6 per cent. Dublin saw the lowest increase in growth, just 16.6 per cent but Dublin represents 36.4 per cent of all new car sales.