By now our readers know that distracted driving is one of the most prevalent dangers on the roads in America today. In fact, many states in the country have passed laws specifically tailored to address this rising threat to the safety of everyone on the roadways. But, the fact remains that distracted drivers cause many of the car accidents that we see on the side of the road every day.
Forms of distraction
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are three main forms of distraction for drivers, in a general sense: cognitive, manual and visual. Each category of distraction obviously has specific examples.
Cognitive distraction occurs when a driver’s mind is not focused on the task of driving. There can be many prompts for cognitive distraction, such as daydreaming or thinking about the tasks to be accomplished for the day, for example – anything instead of focusing on driving safely. Manual distraction occurs when drivers take their hands off of the wheel. There are plenty of examples of this type of distraction: engaging the “infotainment” system in the car; eating; putting on makeup; and, of course, using the ever-present cellphone.
Visual distraction occurs when drivers take their eyes off of the road. This goes against the main tenet of driver’s education: Keep your eyes on the road. Now, most drivers don’t just stare straight ahead all the time while driving, but the idea is that you are supposed to engage your most important sense in the important task of driving if you are going to be safe behind the wheel. Because, let’s face it, any car accident has the potential to cause serious injuries to all parties involved.