Attention car owners: hands-free car technologies and infortainment systems are still as distracting as texting while driving and could potentially put motorists as well as pedestrians at hazard.

Experts from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety said possibly unsafe mental interferences can remain for up to 27 seconds after changing music, dialing or sending a text with the use of voice commands, such as Apple's Siri, Microsoft's Cortana and Google Now.

"The lasting effects of mental distraction pose a hidden and pervasive danger that would likely come as a surprise to most drivers," said the President and CEO of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, Peter Kissinger. "The results indicate that motorists could miss stop signs, pedestrians and other vehicles while the mind is readjusting to the task of driving."

This research carried out by the foundation represents the third phase of its extensive study about cognitive distraction, highlighting that hands-free technologies which have recently emerged can mentally distract motorists albeit their hands are on the steering wheel and their eyes are on the road.

Experts tested new hands-free technologies as well as the phone platforms in 10 2015 cars models.

The research revealed that Equinox of Chevrolet was deemed the top performing system which logged a cognitive rating of 2.4. Meanwhile, Mazda 6 gained a poor 4.6 rating out of 5. The Foundation looks at anything rated two or higher as possibly risky while driving.

Meanwhile, Google Now was found to be less distracting compared to the other smartphone personal assistants, which logged a rating of 3. Siri recorded 3.4, while Cortana gained a score of 3.8.

Previously, the AAA Foundation established that listening to an audio book or the radio belongs to category 1 mental distraction; talking to the phone is at category 2; sending voice-activated text messages on an error-free system is at category 3; posting on social media while on the road is considered category 4; and a highly-challenging, scientific test corresponds to category 5.

AAA chief Marshall Doney does say; car owners must employ caution when utilizing voice-activated systems, albeit drivers are at supposedly secure moments, for instance, when the vehicle is stopped at the intersection or if there is a lull during the travel.

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