Distracted Driving – Top 6 Causes
On average, there are around 6 million car accidents in the U.S. every year. Distracted driving is among the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents. Unfortunately, traffic crashes involving distracted driving claim thousands of lives. Obviously, distracted driving is very dangerous, but some drivers don’t seem to take caution. Do you want to drive better to stay safe? Here are some of the top causes of distracted driving you should know about:
You should never let your mind wander when you are behind the steering wheel of a moving vehicle. Daydreaming, or getting ‘lost in thought’ is the number one cause of distracted driving. It takes your attention off the road. You may forget to use the right turn signals or fail to acknowledge traffic lights unconsciously. You also won’t react to events fast enough, which can prove costly. You also shouldn’t be too sad and angry when driving. Always keep your emotions under control when you are driving.
Cell Phone and Other Devices
We are all so attached to our cellphones that we can’t bear the thought of not using them for a long time. Most drivers can’t resist the urge to take a call or text while driving. This has also been found to be one of the most prominent causes of distracted driving. Simply reaching out for your cellphone or any other digital device you brought into the car can be a huge and costly distraction. When you are conversing with someone on the phone or texting, you can’t maintain the necessary level of concentration needed for safe driving.
Eating or Drinking While Driving
No matter how hungry you feel or how tantalizing the snack you just bought looks, eating while driving is a risk you shouldn’t take. Taking a hand off the steering wheel even for a few seconds can cause a severe crash, and no food or drink is worth that. If you are too hungry, find a parking lot and enjoy whatever food and non-alcoholic beverage you have before continuing the journey.
Some passengers constitute distractions for drivers. The other occupants of your vehicle can be the cause of distracted driving when you don’t handle the situations correctly. You can have conversations with passengers while driving, but you shouldn’t do it too much or try to look them in the eyes when you make your points. Children passengers are more likely to cause distracted driving, so you should take the necessary measures to keep them engaged as you drive. Dogs too can cause distractions, so it is advised to keep them in their appropriate carrier.
Paying Serious Attention to Things Outside the Car
You shouldn’t be preoccupied with things happening outside your car when you are driving. Your priority should be to drive to your location safely. That means you have to keep your eyes on the road. Do not pay more attention than necessary to the things and events by the roadside.
Radio and Music
Your favorite song may also be your biggest distraction when you are driving. It has been proven that the type of music drivers listen to and the volume they play it can affect their driving significantly. Several ugly situations may arise if you get carried away by the music or program on the radio. Adjusting audio and climate controls is also a significant cause of distracted driving.
Safe driving means you need to avoid distractions as much as possible. We have discussed six major causes of distracted driving and hope that this article will help you drive safer.
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