Vehicle infotainment systems putting drivers at risk

Those fancy new electronic displays on car dashboards may have made driving more dangerous.

A US study has found infotainment systems draw drivers to take their eyes off the road and hands of the wheel.

Researchers used volunteers to test 30 different vehicles on the road.

They analysed how often drivers looked at their screen while doing things like calling, texting, and using the navigation and stereo system - and concluded drivers could be visually distracted for more than 40 seconds.

University of Utah Professor David Strayer led the research.

"Some of the most advanced systems are really very difficult for the driver to use," he told CBS.

"It just took the drivers' eyes of the road and their mind off the drive for far too long."

Safety experts say they want car companies to change their infotainment systems to prevent distracting features from being used while the vehicle is moving.