Across the roads in the United States, distracted drivers continue to cause accidents each year when they take their eyes off the road, use their cell phone, or let their mind wander. The problem has become so bad that many states have come forward with laws attempting to alleviate or limit the growing threat. Statistics from 2017 show that more than 3,000 people died in accidents attributed to inattentive driving, and thousands more were hospitalized. However, don’t blame the teenagers as the ones solely responsible for the situation because the same statistics show that adults are more than twice as likely to become distracted while driving. So, what can you do to help end distracted driving?
Stop Using the Phone
New portable devices have been introduced to make talking on the phone more driver friendly, but both the devices and the apps associated with them still often require the driver to touch the screen to answer the call, send a text, or set up a screen. The same is true for switching between songs when the music app is running. The driver’s eyes must leave the road and focus on the phone’s screen. Although there are emergency phone calls that may come through once in a while, most of the time using the phone while driving is simply unnecessary and can be considered dangerous to yourself and those around you.
Focus Your Mind on the Road
Perhaps you argued with your significant other, your boss gave you a new complicated task to complete in 24 hours, or your children are screaming and crying in the back of the vehicle. No matter why your mind wanders while you are driving, it can become a deadly distraction in moments if a car darts in front of yours and you are forced to slam on your breaks. It only takes a split second to make a decision that can prevent an accident, but if your mind is wandering and you are not aware of the problem, it could be too late to use safety measures. Pull over and settle the children, and keep your mind on the road – for everyone’s sake
Keep Your Hands on the Wheel
Everyone needs to eat, and it has become accepted by most people that eating inside a vehicle while driving is approved behavior. The problem is that when you are grabbing and unwrapping your food in order to eat it, your eyes are off the road, your hands are off the steering wheel, and your mind is focused on not getting the food on your clothing. Consider that it takes you five seconds to unwrap your burger and you are traveling 55 mph. In those five seconds, you have traveled more than 100 yards or one-third of a football stadium. Why not pull over in the parking lot of the fast food establishment and eat your food? It will help keep you and your passengers safe.
You can follow these three simple steps to help end distracted driving. Do not believe you need to be the exception to the rule just this one time – it can be deadly.