Distracted driving has become an epidemic in the United States. In the age of technology, cell phones, GPS devices, and other electronic devices are to blame for a growing number of car accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 3,000 people die, and 300,000 are injured yearly in car accidents because of distractions. And it’s not just cell phones that are causing distractions.
In this article, we’ll explore the dangers of distracted driving and offer tips on staying safe while behind the wheel.
Article Quick Takes
- What is distracted driving and why is it dangerous?
- What are some common distracted driving behaviors?
- How to stay safe while driving
- Nationwide United Auto Transport is all about safety
What is distracted driving, and why is it dangerous?
Distracted driving is any activity that diverts attention from the task of safe driving. Three types of distracted driving are visual, manual, and cognitive. Visual distractions involve taking your eyes off the road. Manual distractions involve taking your hands off the wheel. And cognitive distractions involve taking your mind off of driving.
Distracted driving is dangerous because it increases the risk of a crash. When you take your attention off the road, even for a little bit, you could miss something important. For example, you might not see a child running into the street or a car stopping suddenly. And if you’re traveling at high speeds, the consequences of a distracted driving crash can be devastating.
What are some common distracted driving behaviors?
Many activities can distract drivers, but some are more common than others. Here are a few of the most common distracted driving behaviors:
The dangers of using a cell phone while driving
Cell phones are the most common type of distracted driving, as they can cause all three types of distraction. Sending or reading a text message takes your eyes off the road for an average of five seconds. That’s long enough to travel the length of a football field at 55 mph.
The dangers of eating or drinking while driving
Another common form of distracted driving is eating or drinking while behind the wheel. This distraction can be especially dangerous because it takes your hands and your eyes off the road. And if you spill your food or drink, you could be even more distracted.
The dangers of talking to passengers while driving
Talking to passengers in the car is another common form of distracted driving. While it may not seem as dangerous as other activities, chatting with a passenger can still take your attention away from the road. If you’re carrying on a conversation, you may not be as attentive to your surroundings.
How to stay safe while driving
The best way to avoid distracted driving is to focus on the task of driving and not allow anything to distract you. Here are a few tips to help you stay safe while behind the wheel:
- Put your cell phone away before you start driving. Pull over in a safe location if you need to use it.
- Don’t eat or drink while driving. If you’re hungry, stop and get something to eat before you continue on your trip.
- Avoid talking to passengers while driving. If you need to have a conversation, wait until you’ve stopped the car.
- Pay attention to your surroundings. If you focus on something else, you may not see a hazard in time to avoid.
Following these tips can help reduce your risk of being involved in a distracted driving accident. And remember, if you’re ever in doubt about whether something is safe to do while driving, it’s always best to err on the side of caution.
Nationwide United Auto Transport is all about safety
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