According to the NHTSA, 3,166 were killed, while another 400,000 suffered varying degrees of injury because of driver distraction in 2017.
Cause of Distracted Driving
That’s about 9 and 1000 people per day respectively. Distracted driving is incredibly dangerous. And it can happen in a split second. The time that it takes you to look away is all the time you need to get in an accident.
There are many causes of being distracted, and all of them can cause significant bodily harm if you’re careless. Let’s examine them:
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Making and Receiving Phone Calls
Taking phone calls behind the wheels is incredibly dangerous and distracts your mind. A 2009 study showed that people are almost blind to every other thing when they’re on a phone call.
This study involved having clowns ride around in a unicycle in a train station while the subjects were on a call. None of the subjects reportedly saw the clowns on a unicycle.
As much as possible, avoid making or taking phone calls while you’re driving. And if you must, pull over first and then initiate or take the calls. Also, make sure to use hands-free devices for calls while driving.
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Texting Behind the Wheels
Youtube is awash with videos of other road users recording people who are texting and driving. In fact, people are tired of seeing others do this according to The Cagle Law Firm.
They know that this action puts every other road user in danger. Which is probably why people record these videos to shame these dangerous drivers.
In fact, in 2015, a school bus driver ran into another school bus killing three people just because he was texting while driving.
People who text while driving are 23 times more likely to be involved in a car crash. Don’t text while driving. It’s the height of distracted driving.
Talking While Driving
This is another major cause of driver distraction. Arguments, exciting conversations, or even pointing out things while someone is driving will get them distracted. This puts both the driver and the passengers in danger.
All a driver has to do is look at the new building that you pointed out, at the same time as someone else is overtaking wrongly, for you to be in a head-on collision.
This is why you shouldn’t have arguments with people who are driving. Emotional incidents can also cause drivers to momentarily lose their sanity.
This is very important for couples who are having a spat. If you have any issues, just wait until you’re parked before dealing with it.
Is That Everything That Constitutes as Driver Distraction?
No… those are just examples. If you bend down to pick up stuff, drink or eat, or apply makeup while driving, you’re essentially putting all road users at risk.
Anything that gets in the way of 100 percent attention while driving qualifies as driver distraction. If you have to take your hands off the wheel, or your mind and eyes off the road, that’s a major distraction.
Avoid it like the plague. For more information on the dangers of driving distract facts, browse the rest of our automotive section.