Distractions are what prevents us from getting things done that we need to like work, chores, or obligations. But when we’re driving, these distractions can be deadly. Although we’re told constantly by law enforcement or driving instructors that we should be driving distraction free, not everyone takes that to heart. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), there are three types of distracted driving: manual, visual, and cognitive. Let’s take a look at each type and how to avoid them.
Manual distractions include anything that causes you to take your hands off the wheel such as adjusting the air conditioning or radio, eating, drinking, adjusting a seatbelt, smoking, or searching through a purse or wallet. Unfortunately, many people have made driving with one hand the new norm and suffer higher accident rates as a result. The truth is, it’s very hard to make a sudden turn and avoid an obstacle without two hands on the wheel. Additionally, your attention will be fully focused on driving when both hands are on the wheel. To prevent manual distractions, avoid keeping food, drinks, or cigarettes in the car that you may be tempted to reach for or put them in the back seat if you need to.
Visual driving distractions include things like a GPS device, your phone, the radio, or even things happening on the road can be visual distractions. Chief among these distractions is texting or making phone calls while driving. According to the National Safety Council, there are 1.6 million accidents per year due to cell phone use. All of which could have been avoided if phones were turned off and put away while driving. Avoid other visual distractions by keeping your eyes on the road and avoid looking down to check the radio or anything else that’s going on inside the car. If you get distracted by something to the side of the road, be sure to pull over first.
A cognitive distraction is anything that takes your mind off of driving like talking to a passenger, daydreaming, or being under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Driving while drowsy is also a major contributor to cognitive distractions. If you’re driving with a lot of people, make sure they’re being respectful and not distracting you. If you are drowsy or are under the influence of drugs, let someone else drive who isn’t. If you start to get impatient with other drivers, pull over and cool off before you continue driving.
Avoid Distracted Driving
Unfortunately, even small distractions can lead to accidents. If you want to avoid an accident, be sure to examine your own driving habits and adjust them accordingly. If you do find yourself in an accident or your car breaks down, your local towing company B & B Towing and Recovery is always on hand to help you out. We also provide roadside repairs so to help you get back on the road as soon as possible.