Whether you’re adjusting the radio, talking on the phone or checking your email or text messages, distracted driving is everywhere. During a simple three-second glance down to your cell phone, when traveling at 70 miles per hour, you travel over the length of a football field.
Thousands of people die each year in crashes related to cell phone use, according to the National Safety Council, but text messages and calls aren’t the only forms of distraction.
There are three types of distractions:
- Visual: Taking your eyes off the road
- Manual: Taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive: Taking your mind off what you are doing
Texting while driving incorporates all three types of distraction, making it one of the deadliest things you can do while driving.
Here are some solutions to prevent distracted driving:
- Secure all passengers or items that could pose a distraction. Consider limiting the number of passengers in your vehicle, as well as the level of activity.
- Plan your route ahead of time. Make sure you are familiar with your path before you begin driving. Don’t use your cell phone or GPS while your vehicle is in motion.
- Take care of any adjustments beforehand (radio, music, A/C, heat, seat, etc.)
- Avoid driving when upset or tired. If you are drowsy, pull off the road.
- Use your cell phone only in an emergency. Even hands-free devices can cause you to miss the audio and visual cues needed to avoid a collision
- Avoid eating while driving. Finishing your meal on the road may seem like a time-saver, but it’s much safer to enjoy your meal before you leave.
Distracted driving is one of the main causes for crashes. Follow these tips to avoid distraction and stay safe on the roads.