Distraction while driving is a major source of risk. Since driving is usually part of daily life for most American adults, they tend to take for granted the fact that they will arrive safely at their intended destination. Unfortunately, that is simply not always the case.
Failing to pay adequate attention to the task of maneuvering the vehicle and monitoring traffic can drastically increase the risk to everyone on the road. Many people struggle with addictions to their mobile devices and can have a hard time ignoring the sounds of their phone even while driving a car.
It is also important to realize that phones are only one of many potential sources of distraction. The more you understand distracted driving, the better you will be able to protect yourself from dangerous drivers not paying attention to the road.
Drivers holding their phones are a red flag
Obviously, people staring at their phones or driving with a phone in their hand are probably not fully engaged with the task of driving. If you see someone’s phone in their face, that is a good reason to give their vehicle a wide berth in traffic.
You should also look for the telltale lack of hands on the wheel or the blue light of the phone from their lap, which is particularly visible once it gets dark outside. Despite laws against texting while driving, people still do it all the time.
Socialization is another source of distraction
Even before people began calling and texting each other on mobile phones while driving, distraction-related collisions were still relatively common. That’s because distraction doesn’t just come from a screen. It can come from the people in the car with you as well.
Conversations with passengers can help you pass the time during your commute or a road trip. However, they can also result in your focusing on the other people in the car instead of driving. Turning to look at other people, taking your hands off the wheel to gesticulate or even getting emotional about the conversation can all impair your ability to manage the vehicle safely.
If you see people obviously talking or even worse, arguing while in a car, give them plenty of space and try to adjust your route accordingly.
Many people multitask during their commute
Many people will do anything to minimize the amount of time it takes to get ready for work. They may choose to finish dressing while driving. Some will brush their hair, brush their teeth or apply makeup in their visor mirror.
All of these tasks take your hands off of the wheel. They take your eyes off the road and your mind off of safety. Avoid anyone who appears to be grooming or dressing themselves, as well as people eating and drinking while driving.
If you wind up hurt in a crash caused by someone distracted at the time of the collision, you may be able to take legal action against the person responsible. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you explore your options for compensation after a major crash.