When it comes to distracted driving, smartphones and texting behind the wheel often rise to the top as the major culprits behind this illegal and unsafe behavior. Alarmingly, this dubious pair has gained in popularity in the past 20 years leading to many motor vehicle accidents.
However, for decades there have been many other questionable behind-the-wheel behaviors. Think eating a hamburger, changing the radio station and putting on mascara. Any of these activities can prove dangerous to any driver and passenger.
Texting, grooming and using navigation systems
Here are some types of distracted driving:
- Use of smartphones: Texting, reading, checking social media accounts and voicemail as well as talking are risky behavior.
- Eating and drinking: People traveling or in a hurry succumb to these acts.
- Talking with passengers: Socializing and chit-chat take your mind away from driving.
- Reading books, publications and maps: Commuters, sometimes resort to the first two, while travelers may subscribe to the third.
- Grooming: Surprisingly, some drivers put on make-up, fix their hair, shave, brush and floss their teeth.
- Using a navigation system: The growing popularity of GPS navigation systems has led to too many drivers more focused on how to get to destinations rather than watching the road.
- Adjusting the vehicle’s climate controls or audio controls: Comfort and sound provide driver distractions. Make the adjustments beforehand.
- Playing with or disciplining children or pets: They are a part of the family, but drivers must focus on their safety and the safety of other drivers.
- Rubbernecking: A driver who takes his or her eyes off the road may lead to a rear-end collision. They may stare at wreckage on the side of the road, damage caused by a storm or scenic areas.
These are unsafe activities that some drivers may consider normal behavior. Some may be too self-centered in not knowing the danger they may cause.
Tragedy may be moments away
It only takes one type of distracted driving to lead to a tragedy or life-changing injury. Be on the alert to this negligent behavior from other drivers. By avoiding them, you may put you and your passengers out of harm’s way.