Distraction while driving can come in many forms, not just phones

Distraction while driving can come in many forms, not just phones

Distracted driving has become nearly as well-known as drunk driving in terms of irresponsible behaviors that can directly contribute to a crash. Still, as with drunk driving, there is a lot of misinformation and confusion regarding distracted driving.

Quite a few people seem to think that someone only drives distracted when they pick up a cellphone or similar mobile device with the intent of using it while driving. While cellphone use is one of the more serious and obvious forms of distracted driving, it is far from the only one.

Distracted driving has been an issue for as long as people have been on the road, and no technology is necessary for someone to distract themselves from the task of driving safely.

Anything that takes your hands off the wheel is a distraction

Are you one of those people who constantly surfs through the channels on the radio while on your way to work? Every time you take your hands off the wheel to scroll through the radio channels and your eyes off the road to look down at your console, you drive distracted.

Eating at the wheel, applying makeup, changing or adjusting your clothing and reaching for items in the passenger seat or back seat of the vehicle are all also examples of distraction that people don’t think is as risky as mobile phone use.

Letting your mind wander is as dangerous as letting your hands wander

Driving is a stressful activity because of all of the danger involved. Still, it is also often very dull, meaning that people struggle to stay focused while driving. Some people actively entertain themselves at the wheel by daydreaming or calling people. Others listen to books on tape and sing along with the radio to pass the time.

There is a fine line between appropriately occupying yourself so that you don’t fall asleep out of boredom and becoming so mentally focused on another task that you can’t drive safely.

Any activity that keeps you from focusing on driving and keeping your hands on the wheel could increase your risk of a distracted driving crash, as even internal distraction like daydreaming can result in missing changes in traffic conditions.

The Johnson Law Firm, LLC, can answer your questions about what our legal practices. Contact us for a free consultation. We are located in St. Charles and serve the surrounding areas of Missouri.