Driving is a daily activity for most adults in the United States. Unfortunately, it comes with its fair share of risks, especially when distractions take your attention away from the road. Distracted driving can lead to devastating consequences and there are many ways drivers can become distracted, some of which are not discussed often enough.
What is distracted driving?
Distracted driving happens when a driver diverts their attention away from driving. It’s not just about texting, although that is certainly a common way of becoming distracted.
Types of distractions
Generally, driving distractions fall into three categories:
There are many scenarios that reflect the above categories. For example, texting and driving takes your eyes off the road, resulting in a visual distraction. Other examples include:
- Talking on the phone, even using hands-free devices, can lead to cognitive distraction, reducing your focus on the road.
- Eating and drinking while driving can lead to both manual and visual distractions, increasing the risk of accidents.
- Passenger distractions, which can involve engaging in conversations or activities with other passengers, can divert your attention from driving safely and risk your life and the life of other people.
The risks involved
The risks associated with distracted driving are many, and doing so increases the likelihood of accidents and injuries. The consequences extend beyond the distracted driver, affecting passengers, pedestrians and other motorists on the road.
If you cause an accident because of distracted driving, you may face legal consequences resulting in hefty fines, license points, potential lawsuits for personal injury or wrongful death, and even imprisonment.
In today’s busy world, it is critical to remember the responsibility that comes with the privilege of driving. By understanding the dangers of distracted driving and attempting to stay focused, we can contribute to a safer road for everyone.