Distracted driving has become a significant concern in recent years, contributing to a significant number of motor vehicle accidents. Sadly, distracted driving causes many injuries and deaths on an annual basis.
Drivers should review the various forms of distracted driving, the dangers they pose and practical tips to avoid distractions and stay focused on the road.
Texting and eating behind the wheel
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that over 362,400 people suffered injuries in distracted driving crashes during 2021. One of the most common forms of distracted driving is texting while driving. The use of mobile phones while behind the wheel diverts attention from the road, increasing the risk of accidents. Reading or sending text messages takes the driver’s eyes off the road, hands off the steering wheel and mind off of driving.
Another form of distracted driving is eating or drinking while driving. Many drivers indulge in grabbing a quick snack or sipping a beverage while on the go. However, this diverts attention from the road and reduces reaction time, making it harder to respond to unexpected situations.
Avoiding distractions while driving
To avoid distractions while driving, it is important to adopt good practices. First and foremost, drivers should keep mobile phones out of reach and avoid any temptations to use them while driving. If necessary, pull over to a safe location before using the phone. Additionally, it is advisable to plan meals and snacks in advance to avoid eating while driving. Taking breaks during long journeys can also help reduce the temptation to eat or drink behind the wheel.
Distracted driving poses a significant risk to road safety. By following practical tips to avoid distractions, people can stay focused on the task of driving and contribute to safer roads for everyone.