Distracted driving has quickly ascended to a significant issue across the United States. Every year thousands of people suffer injuries or lose their lives in car accidents involving someone who is driving distracted. What makes the issue so frustrating is that distracted driving is a problem that theoretically should be easily preventable.
The habits necessary for the prevention of distracted driving accidents are both simple to understand and carry out. Understanding both how distractions affect you specifically and what steps you need to take in order to avoid distracted driving is crucial to the deterrence of this matter.
Put your cell phone away
Potentially the greatest threat to safe driving is your cell phone. The various number of options that your cell phone offers creates multiple distractions. Making phone calls, sending text messages, reviewing your social media pages, exploring different applications or changing your settings can all contribute to driving distracted.
In 2018, 4,637 people lost their lives in car accidents due to cell phone use, which contributed to an estimated $129 billion in damages. Additionally, 14% of all fatal car accidents involved someone using a cell phone.
Your cell phone is obviously an important part of your daily life. That said, it should not be too difficult to put it away for a few minutes. There are plenty of applications available that allow you to send a response message to anyone trying to contact you while you drive. These alternatives should be part of your driving routine and should play an important role in making the roads a safer place to drive.
Get situated before driving
Combing your hair or finishing your breakfast may seem simple enough, but these small distractions do contribute to distracted driving issues. Anytime you take your eyes off the road or remove your hands from the wheel, you are putting both yourself and other drivers at risk. Moreover, you do not need to change much about your daily routine to follow this prevention tactic.
Almost everyone has experienced the panic of running late for something. You probably end up multitasking and trying to fit more tasks into a smaller period of time. Making the active choice to get situated before stepping behind the wheel is an important piece in the prevention of distracted driving.
Keep your eyes on the road
Keeping your eyes on the road may seem simple in principle, but it may shock you how much time people spend looking at something other than what is in front of them. Have you ever slowed down to get a closer look at an animal or stared at someone pulled over by the police on the side of the highway?
These choices may seem insignificant, but it only takes a split second for a distraction to cause an accident. By simply placing an emphasis on staying focused on the road, you can be part of the solution and not the problem.
Distracted driving affects everyone. Whether you are guilty of texting and driving or simply struggle with focusing on the road, we all can do a better job avoiding distractions.