MP3 players have been one of the biggest revolutions for listening to music on the move in the past two decades and the AA's latest report seems to unfairly highlight the role of the iPod in what it calls "pedestrian inattention" - the apparent cause of 17 collisions a day and up to 500 pedestrian deaths a year.
It is vital to delve into more details about how the data has been compiled to get a bigger picture of the AA's statement. The drivers' association examined AA insurance claims over the past year to the 30th of July 2010 and found out that there were 177 "pedestrian inattention" collisions. Out of these, one resulted in death.
The press release also says that the rate is fairly static at between 12 and 16 per month, up 5 per cent from the previous year or around ONE additional case a month - and that's for one million customers.
Even counting the country as a whole, AA says that ther could be more than 6,000 such collisions per year for the whole driving population of the country (which the AA assume is around 34 million) and most importantly causing 34 deaths.
To put things into perspective, in 2007, 646 pedestrians were killed in road accidents with the number of road deaths hovering around 3,000 with the number of road casualties amounting to 248,000 (or as the official statistics office shows it, 48 per 100 million vehicle kilometres).
More importantly though, the AA forgets to provide with a more detailed analysis of the trend for the past decade; whether the iPod (or indeed any MP3 or portable devices) has been the a significant behind accidents on the road.
Should the AA (and any other insurance company) have proven that listening to music while performing any other activities statistically (and significantly) increased your chance of getting hit by a car, they would have added a premium on life insurance for iPod toting customers, something which, as far as we know, not even remotely being considered.