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March 08, 2018
You’ve seen them on the roads; you might even know a few of them.
And you could be one yourself.
Distracted drivers come in all shapes, sizes, ages and experience levels. Even if you’re not one today, you could become one at any moment — in the time it takes you to answer your cell phone or check the kids in the back seat while you’re driving through your neighborhood.
If you or someone else you know thinks you can drive just fine while talking on your phone, consider this: In 2015 alone, 3,477 people were killed, and 391,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.
During daylight hours, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones while driving. That creates enormous potential for deaths and injuries on U.S. roads. Teens were the largest age group reported as distracted at the time of fatal crashes.
More statistics on distracted driving and other risky driving behaviors are available here.
Distractions on the road come in many forms, according to www.distraction.gov, a U.S. Department of Transportation website. There are three main kinds of distractions:
Visual – taking your eyes off the road
Manual –taking your hands off the wheel
Cognitive – taking your mind off what you’re doing
To help you avoid all three kinds of distractions the next time you’re behind the wheel of your car, here are a few tips:
· To reduce temptation, put your phone in silent mode and store it away from the front seat or in a purse or bag.
· Have a passenger answer your phone or return text messages for you.
· If a call or a text can’t wait, pull over in a safe spot before using your phone.
· Finish shaving or applying makeup before you get in the car.
· If you’re emotional, wait until you’ve calmed down before hitting the road. Avoid road rage. You’ll be happier and safer.
Whenever you’re on the road, it’s not a time to multi-task. Focus on driving safely.