How To Avoid Distractions While Driving
Distracted driving has been the cause of many accidents in Alabama. While most people understand how texting or trying to put makeup on are distracting activities to do while driving, there are a lot of other ways in which people can be distracted. Knowing all the different kinds of distracted driving and how to prevent them from affecting a driving experience can save lives.
According to Distraction.gov, distractions compromise the safety of bystanders, passengers, and drivers. Anything that takes a driver’s attention away from the act of driving is considered distracted driving. To help prevent these distractions from impairing driving, motorists should be aware of how they are distracted, and educate each other so as to spread awareness:
- Adjusting a radio, MP3 player, or CD player can take a driver’s attention away from the steering wheel.
- A navigation system is also distracting if it is used while on the road. Even reading a map can be dangerous if done while on the road.
- Grooming activities, such as putting makeup on, removing blemishes, or touching hair are also distractions. If a driver’s eyes are on the little mirror in front of their face, they are not looking at the road ahead of them.
- Drinking and eating can be a minor or a major distraction, but it is always distracting in some way.
- Using a phone is particularly dangerous, especially when texting. An accident can happen in an instant, and typing a text message takes much longer than that. Texting uses a driver’s cognitive, manual, and visual attention.
People should be aware that the average distance traveled in five seconds at 55 miles per hour is a football field’s length. That is also the average time people look away from the road when they text, which equates to wearing a blindfold for that distance.
The details of how distraction works
The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration provides a breakdown as to how distractions create issues while driving. The agency has isolated a couple main components: exposure, or frequency, and demand. If a driver is regularly doing an easy task, like lighting a cigarette, that task becomes a bigger problem the more it is repeated. If a driver is doing something that is very demanding of their attention, it is even worse than doing an easier task for the same amount of time. All in all, a driver should always be prepared to respond to critical events, which means giving the act of driving their full attention.
People who have been injured because of distracted drivers in Jasper might find they want to pursue litigation. An experienced local attorney may be able to help people get what they are entitled to by law.