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Distracted driving is almost always a preventable road hazard

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2024 | Personal Injury

Drivers should always have their attention fully on driving. When they let other things claim their attention, they may not be able to react suitably to what’s going on around them.

While some people think that short distractions don’t matter, the fact is that even being distracted as little as five seconds can result in catastrophic consequences. In that short time, a vehicle that’s going 55 miles per hour will drive the length of a football field.

Cognitive distractions

Cognitive distractions occur when a driver’s mind isn’t fully focused on the task of driving. These can be caused by various activities, such as engaging in deep conversations with passengers, daydreaming or being preoccupied with personal or work-related thoughts. While these distractions might not seem as immediate or obvious as others, their impact on driving safety is significant.

Visual distractions

Visual distractions draw the driver’s gaze away from the road. These can range from looking at a GPS device or reading billboards to observing scenery or an event outside the vehicle. Even glancing at a phone for a few seconds can be dangerous, as it significantly reduces the driver’s ability to notice and react to changes in traffic conditions, road signs and pedestrian movements.

Manual distractions

Manual distractions involve any actions that require the driver to take one or both hands off the steering wheel, such as eating, drinking, adjusting the car’s controls or handling a mobile phone. These distractions compromise the driver’s ability to control the vehicle effectively, especially in situations requiring sudden maneuvers.

Even drivers who never succumb to distractions can still be involved in a distracted driving crash at the hands of another driver. Those victims may opt to pursue a compensation claim to cover the expenses of the crash.