Today in our busy society, distracted driving is on the rise. It seems there is too much to do and too little time to do it. Maybe so, but one must find the time other than when they are behind the wheel to check things off their to-do list.
The definition of distracted driving according to Dictionary.com states that it is “driving a vehicle while engaging in an activity that has the potential to distract the driver from the task of driving.”
Consider these statistics. In 2012, 3,328 people were killed in accidents involving a distracted driver, and approximately 421,000 were injured. I would say that’s a lot of distractions happening out there!
Mark Edwards, director of the traffic study at American Automobile Association, says that “25 to 30 percent of all motor vehicles in this country really have distraction as their root cause.”
Below is a list of the 8 most common distractions that lead to car accidents
Texting and cell phone talking – These are things that involve visual, cognitive and manual distractions and can completely take one away from the road. Your friends would rather hear from you later rather than knowing they were the one you were texting when you crashed.
Eating/Drinking – More people have had accidents due to spilled hot coffee. Make sure your coffee cup is secure and try to have breakfast before getting behind the wheel!
Talking to Passengers – We all enjoy a good conversation but we must focus on the road first and foremost. Your passenger will be glad you did instead of being distracted and possibly crashing!
Grooming – As a teenager, I remember putting my mascara on while driving and having the radio cranked up full blast. A cop pulled me over and asked me “What world are you living in??” I learned quickly after paying a hefty fine that I must finish my makeup before the car ride!
Reading – Seriously? I know we can all be engrossed in a great novel but this must not happen behind the wheel.
Using Navigation Systems – Try to program all this in before you are driving. If you have to readjust it, take a few minutes to pull over. It will be worth it.
Picking something up off the floor – Your cell phone or purse or whatever it is that you dropped can wait until you are at a stop.
Tending to children – The children can wait a few minutes to get that toy they dropped or the snack on the floor that they can’t reach. Be an example to them early on that your mind must be focused on the road.
Bottom line, do everything you can to limit distractions. If it means getting up a little earlier in the morning to make sure everything is completed, do it! Nothing is more important than your safety and the safety of those in your vehicle.
If you have been involved in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, take a moment to learn about your legal rights and then contact Tennessee distracted driving attorneys at Gilreath & Associates to discuss your case.