When you are behind the wheel, everyone expects you to pay attention to the road and to do your best to avoid distractions that might lead to a nasty accident. Unfortunately, so many things can distract you even when it’s not intentional. You must keep your eyes on the road and focus on safe driving.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the three types of distracted driving:
Types of Distracted Driving
1. Visual Distraction
This is probably one of the most common type of distractions for drivers. Visual distractions are things that make a driver take their eyes of the road even if it’s just for a split second. Anything can serve as a visual distraction including adjusting your mirror, viewing a new text message on your phone, looking outside the car if the distraction is on the side of the road, and so on. Any type of visual distraction keeps you from focusing on the road.
2. Manual Distraction
Manual distraction can involve visual distraction, which means you might be taking both or one of your hands off the steering wheel for a number of reasons. For instance, you might be trying to reply to a text with one hand while holding the steering wheel with the other.
Texting while driving is one of the major causes of car accidents in the US and is a major distraction according to the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration. Not only is texting a visual and manual distraction but it is also a cognitive distraction.
3. Cognitive Distraction
These distractions prevent your mind from focusing on the road. You might be driving but then you remember something stressful and you take your mind off the road. Simply put, you won’t be in the right state of mind to act quickly on the road or to drive safely.
Tips to Help You Focus on the Road
Most of us are guilty of distracted driving. Below are some ways that can help ensure you are safe on the road:
- Only use your phone when it’s urgent. You might think that it’s safe to use a hands free device but you could still suffer from visual or cognitive distraction. You might miss a turn or fail to see a speed bump. If you need to make a social call, pull over. It’s illegal in most jurisdictions to talk on your mobile phone while driving.
- Pull off the Road if You’re Drowsy. Drowsiness slows down your reaction time. According to a study done by the US government, 37% of US drivers have fallen asleep while driving. Instead of speeding to get home fast because you are tired, it’s better to get off the road and take a nap.
- Limit the Level of Activity and Number of Passengers. When novice drivers drive with friends, they are more focused on their friends instead of the road. Graduated driver licensing laws do not allow teenagers to have teenage passengers with them in the car during the first few months of driving alone.
- Don’t Eat and Drive. It might seem tempting to finish your breakfast while driving on your way to work. However, this acts as a distraction because first, you will take your hands off the wheel and second, you won’t pay attention to your surroundings. Food spills are also another source of distraction.
- Don’t Multi-task in the Car. This is a no-brainer. Multi-tasking is a form of cognitive, visual and manual distraction.
Always take your time while driving. The main objective here is to keep other drivers, your passengers and yourself safe on the road. Studies show that human beings are limited to the amount of information they can process at once. It’s human nature to shift back and forth for people who are driving in order to accommodate multiple demands. Since teenagers have less experience behind the wheel, distraction can prove disastrous.
Hire a Providence Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been a victim of a car accident in Providence, an experienced car accident lawyer in Providence, RI can help you settle your case or even take you through the litigation process. There are times when it might not be anybody’s fault. Your accident could be the result of a car defect or circumstances that are out of your control. At Kevin P Landry Law Offices, we can review your case for free. Call us at 401-751-0101 today to schedule for a free initial consultation.