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Understanding the 3 types of distracted driving

On Behalf of | Nov 24, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car crashes, claiming approximately 3,000 lives each year.

This statistic underscores the need to address this pressing issue. To start, it is important for you to understand the three types of distractions that hinder your ability to stay fully focused on driving.

1. Visual distractions

When you take your eyes off the road to do something, even for a split second, that is a visual distraction. Whether it is glancing at a text message, adjusting the GPS or reaching for something in the back seat, diverting your eyes from the road greatly increases your risk of having an accident. Instead, wait to do these things when you park, or you are able to pull over on the side of the road.

2. Manual distractions

Manual distractions occur when your hands leave the steering wheel, impairing your ability to control the vehicle. Common examples include texting, eating or adjusting the radio while driving. These distractions are a leading factor in many accidents on the road. To avoid this, keep both hands on the wheel to maintain control and reduce the likelihood of a collision.

3. Cognitive distractions

Mental activities that move your attention away from driving are cognitive distractions. Daydreaming, engaging in deep conversations or getting lost in thought can impair your reaction time and decision-making skills. Eliminate cognitive distractions by staying focused on driving to ensure that you are mentally prepared to respond to any potential hazards.

The impact of a momentary distraction can have life-altering consequences. As a responsible driver, it is your duty to recognize and combat these distractions to protect yourself and those sharing the road.

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