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Typical driving distractions Georgia residents face

On Behalf of | Mar 8, 2024 | Car Wrecks |

Fixing up your hair in the mirror, reading a flashy billboard or jamming out to your favorite tune are things many drivers engage in. Even though some distractions are uncontrollable, learning about how drivers succumb to them and how they tend to lose focus can help to manage them better.

Why drivers are distracted

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2021 alone, over 3,500 people lost their lives in a distracted driving collision. One major issue is that too many drivers think they can multitask behind the wheel. Too many of us face demanding work and home lives. Under pressure, this can influence a driver to do risky things like checking their work email at a red light.

The problem is multitasking is quite literally not possible for humans. In fact, after engaging in a distraction, it usually takes about 15 minutes for the brain to get back on track with the original task at hand. Therefore, your safest bet is not to think you have superhuman powers and to take driving as an opportunity to unplug and relax a bit — that is, as long as your focus remains sharp.

Types of distractions

Preventing controllable distractions is another way to remain as safe as possible and be courteous to the drivers around you. For starters, this can begin with a brief overview of the three main types of distractions:

  1. Manual: A manual distraction involves partaking in any activity requiring one or both hands. While driving, this could include eating, taking a call, applying makeup or grabbing a toy dropped by a child.
  2. Visual: Anything that pulls a driver’s eyes away from the road is a visual distraction; this could include checking directions or reading a text message.
  3. Cognitive: Some distractions live inside the mind. Mental distractions can include daydreaming or putting too much focus on recalling the lyrics of the song on the radio.

If you know there are a couple of distractions you constantly find yourself guilty of, then it’s important to put preventative actions in place. For example, if you find it hard to put your phone down, then locking it in your glove compartment is an option; if you tend to grab breakfast on the go, try waking up a bit earlier to eat it before leaving for your morning commute; if you constantly find yourself tending to your kids or pets, try creating playlists they like and making sure their seats or carriers are secure before taking off.

When you are constantly thinking ahead, distractions may reduce and help lower your chance of becoming part of a devastating statistic.


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