Now the idea of in-dash information centers and hands-free systems are being called into question, according to a report on Which do you feel is safer — a system like that, or using your cell phone directly?

Crashes are on the rise, according to the report. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found traffic deaths increased in New Jersey in 2015. State Poflice report fatal crashes are up in 2016, too.

The handheld cell phone allows you to drive with one hand on the steering wheel, which most people do, while holding the phone to your ear with the other. Unlike conversations with hands free or other passengers in the car, your head is not on a swivel, where you feel you need to look at the person or device you are talking into. Your eyes are totally focused on the road and if there is an emergency, you simply drop the device and react.

The info center requires you to take your eyes off the road, especially while you're following directions. If it wasn't necessary for you to look at it, there wouldn't be a screen. If you're holding a hand held cell using Google Maps or Waze, a voice would be giving you directions while you're in conversation and you could be multitasking on your phone without ever taking your eyes off the road.

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