When you are driving on highways, neighborhood streets, or even in parking lots, it is critical to take steps to avoid a collision caused by distracted driving. You may be wondering more about how to prevent distracted driving and whether there is anything you can do to avoid a crash caused by another negligent motorist. While you may not be able to control the actions of other drivers on the road, you can help to avoid a serious distracted driving accident by learning more about the risks and the preventive measures available.
Learning More About Distracted Driving
You will only be able to prevent a distracted driving accident if you understand how distracted driving crashes happen, and what you can do in your own vehicle to avoid causing a wreck. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains that an average of 9 people are killed in distracted driving accidents every day, and more than 1,000 people suffer injuries in these collisions. What do you need to know about distracted driving in order to avoid it? Most importantly, you should acknowledge that there are three different forms of distractions that can affect a motorist behind the wheel, and it is important to avoid all of them:
- Visual (or, any action that leads you to take your eyes off the road);
- Manual (or, any behavior that leads you to take your hands off the steering wheel); and
- Cognitive (or, any thoughts that lead you to take your mind off the immediate task of driving).
Many people assume that smartphone use behind the wheel—such as texting or talking—is the only way that distracted driving accidents occur. Yet distractions can take many more forms. To be sure, smartphones certainly contribute to distracted driving collisions. However, behaviors like eating while driving, grooming while driving, having a conversation with another passenger, or even getting lost in thought after a difficult day at work are all actions or behaviors that can lead to a distracted driving wreck.
Tips to Avoid a Distracted Driving Accident
What can you do to prevent a distracted driving collision? You might not be able to prevent all distracted driving crashes since they are often caused by other motorists, but you can consider the following tips from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety to avoid distracted driving in your own vehicle:
- Focus on the task of driving at all times;
- Always use your mirrors;
- Whenever you are driving on any roads aside from a highway or freeway, watch out for pedestrians and bicyclists;
- Adjust your mirrors, GPS, heating and cooling, radio, and other devices before you begin driving;
- Never groom in the car;
- Try to eat before you need to drive;
- Make sure pets are securely fastened;
- Keep electronic distractions out of reach;
- Ask passengers to help you avoid distractions; and
- Pull over if there is any task you will need to complete that will take your eyes, hands, or mind off the task of driving.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer in Colorado Springs
If you were injured in a crash caused by a distracted driver, you should speak with a Colorado Springs car accident attorney about your case. Contact McCormick & Murphy, P.C. for more information.