Did you know that around eight people die daily because of distractions that lead to collisions? Those crashes are largely avoidable if people can stop getting distracted behind the wheel.
There are several kinds of distractions that could happen. They include visual distractions, manual distractions and cognitive distractions. These distractions may happen independently or together.
Visual distractions happen when a person takes their eyes off the road. For example, looking at the radio to change the station is a visual distraction.
Manual distractions happen when you take your hands off the wheel. Turning the knob on the radio station would be an example, as would reaching for your phone.
Cognitive distractions are those that take your mind off what you’re doing. It might be anything from a fight that has you upset to having a conversation with someone inside your vehicle.
These three types of distractions can and do injure and kill people when they cause crashes.
Who is at the greatest risk of being distracted behind the wheel?
It is most likely that drivers between the ages of 15 and 19 will be distracted behind the wheel, but drivers of all ages may get distracted. In fact, the percentage of drivers who were distracted and involved in a fatal crash include 8% of those between 15 and 19, 6% of those between 20 and 29, 5% of those between 30 and 39 and 40 and 49 respectively, 4% of those between 50 and 59 and 60 and 69 respectively, and 5% of those 70 or older.
Is it possible to prevent distractions?
Yes, it is. To prevent distracted driving, make it a habit to put away electronics when you enter your vehicle. Don’t multitask. If you need to adjust your seat, mirrors or visors, do it when your vehicle isn’t in motion. If you have to make or take a call, pull over and park.
Distractions are dangerous and often cause crashes that lead to permanent injuries and death. Be cautious, and be aware of what’s happening around you. Distractions are everywhere, but you can take steps to avoid having them impact you.