Education & Safety

Preventing Distracted Driving

Multitasking mania

It’s no secret that we live in a multitasking society -- we think nothing of eating lunch at our desk while typing on the computer to finish that report. While this example of multitasking is benign, there are other times that juggling multiple tasks can be downright dangerous. Doing other things while driving, better known as distracted driving, is extremely unsafe. This risky behavior not only endangers the lives of the driver and passengers, but can also prove catastrophic for other innocent drivers.

If you have been driving long enough, you have undoubtedly seen extreme examples of distracted driving: the man shaving in morning traffic, the woman putting on makeup while rolling down the highway or, even worse, someone reading a roadmap while trying to keep their car on the road. While distracted driving isn’t a new phenomenon, the advent of smartphones has made distracted driving an all too common occurrence. Read on to learn more about the problem of distracted driving and what you can do to combat it.

Distracted driving defined

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Doing another activity while driving is the textbook definition of distracted driving. While most people typically think about a driver texting on a cellphone, distracted driving comes in many forms. From eating to talking to other passengers, distracted driving is dangerous because it takes the driver’s focus off the road.

Distractions like texting, eating, talking, reaching for falling items, adjusting the radio or stretching to assist children or pets can cause three main types of distraction2:

  • Visual distraction – taking eyes off the road2.
  • Manual distraction – removing hands from the steering wheel2.
  • Cognitive distraction – mind wandering from the task at hand2.

What makes texting on your smartphone particularly troublesome is that it combines all three types of distraction.

Deadly distractions

We all know that distracted driving can have dire consequences, but you may be surprised to learn that according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):

Killed-By-Distracted-Driving-Stat
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What you can do

Eliminating distracted driving starts with each of us employing techniques that keeps our attention where it should be – on the road. Check out these tips for reducing distracted driving. Which ones can you make a part of your daily routine?

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Final thoughts

Anything that takes your attention away from the road is a distraction that could result in an accident. Remember, no call or text is worth risking the safety of yourself, your passengers and other drivers. Make the road a safer place by keeping your focus on the task at hand – everything else can wait until you get to your destination.

 

The content contained in this article is for entertainment and informational purposes only and should not be used in lieu of seeking professional advice from a certified technician or mechanic. We encourage you to consult with a certified technician or mechanic if you have specific questions or concerns relating to any of the topics covered herein. Under no circumstances will we be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on any content.

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