Distracted Drivers – Are You One?[/av_textblock] [av_textblock size='18' font_color='' color='' av-medium-font-size='' av-small-font-size='' av-mini-font-size='' admin_preview_bg=''] From those just getting their learner permits to seasoned drivers, the number of distracted drivers is on the rise – and from coast to coast, is negatively impacting the number of crashes on the road.
As a Company that has well over half of its population on the road every day, all day, distracted driving is a relevant concern. We diligently work to educate our employees on road safety to ensure they get home safely each night. But it’s not just our drivers who need to be attentive on the road – it’s every employee driving to and from work.
So what are distracted driving behaviors? There are the obvious things, like fatigue and talking to the passenger, but there are other factors you may not think enough about:
Competition for Visual Processing
Taking your eyes off the road to read a text, looking to see the name of the song on the radio or checking on your child in the backseat force your eyes away from the road. Unfortunately, people do these things all the time without much thought, but it just takes a second of distraction for a crash to occur
Perhaps your eyes are still on the road, but you take one hand off the wheel to adjust the radio, or search for the piece of gum you dropped between the seats. Although your eyes are still on the road, if you need to stop suddenly or change lanes, you have far less control over your vehicle when just one hand is on the wheel.
Eyes on the road, hands on the wheel – these are characteristics of a driver paying attention. But an important missing factor is being mentally present. With endless lists of to-dos, worries about life’s pressures, and thoughts about plans for tomorrow, it’s easy to let your mind drift behind the wheel. When you’re not alert on the road, it’s easy to miss the car swerving in front of you or the pedestrian crossing the street.
[/av_textblock] [av_textblock size='18' font_color='' color='' av-medium-font-size='' av-small-font-size='' av-mini-font-size='' admin_preview_bg=''] The next time you’re behind the wheel, remember these tips to stay safe:
- Keep your cell phone out of reach. Even with good intentions, the urge to check messages is often too great not to check.
- Keep a safe following distance from the vehicle in front of you. Distracted drivers often make erratic maneuvers and distance allows you to avoid crashes.
- Don’t be the first car to enter an intersection and be sure to pause 2 seconds before proceeding when a light turns green. Distracted drivers often run red lights and your slight delay in entering intersections could help you avoid a crash.