According to the National Safety Council, distracted driving refers to anything that draws the attention of a driver away from operating his/her motor vehicle.
Types of Distractions
There are three types of distractions. Visual distractions take your eyes off the road. Manual distractions take your hands off the wheel, and cognitive distractions take your mind off driving. Texting is considered one of the most dangerous because all three types of distractions are happening.
According to AAA, distracted driving causes 5,000 traffic fatalities annually, and at 55 MPH, the average text can distract a driver long enough for the vehicle to travel across a football field, and drivers spend up to 50 percent of their time distracted while driving.
Distracted driving includes phone conversations – handheld, hands-free, or via Bluetooth; sending Snapchats; using voice-to-text features on your dashboard system; updates to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vimeo, Vine or other social media; checking or sending emails; taking selfies or film videos; inputting destinations into GPS devices while the vehicle is in motion; searching radio stations, using CDs and even eating.
Keeping yourself safe is the number one priority. The phone call or text can wait. In the blink of an eye, distracted driving can devastate your life and the lives of others. Remember that when you are behind the wheel, your first and only job is to get you and your passengers to your destination safe and sound. Get in the habit of turning off your phone when you get in the car. Consider stopping and completing your meal before getting back on the road, and getting out to stretch and refocus. Make every trip count, make every trip safe!
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