Distracted driving has been a big cause of Arizona car accidents. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), Arizona distracted driving led to 57,514 crashes, 15,689 injuries, and 810 fatalities in 2018. Although things have been improving — the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) reported a three-year low in 2019 — it remains a potentially lethal problem that all drivers should educate themselves about.
The first step in avoiding Arizona distracted driving accidents is arming yourself with information. With that in mind, Lerner and Rowe presents a guide to the different types of distracted driving, examples of each, and steps you can take to drive safely.
The Three Major Types of Arizona Distracted Driving
Whether it’s losing your concentration, taking your eyes off of the road, or taking your hands off of the steering wheel, getting distracted for even a second can have deadly consequences. It’s important that you and the drivers in your family understand the different ways that you can be distracted while driving. The three major types of driving distractions are cognitive distractions, visual distractions, and manual distractions. Below are the definitions of each.
Cognitive distractions are ones that take your mind away from the act of driving. It’s extremely important to maintain focus while driving for your safety and the safety of your passengers. Letting your mind drift or your attention wane could lead to you hitting other motorists or pedestrians. It can also lower your reaction time to sudden changes in road conditions. Examples of cognitive distractions include:
- Driving while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol
- Talking on the telephone
- Getting lost in conversation with passengers
- Driving immediately after an emotional incident
- Driving while mentally exhausted
Visual distractions are one that takes your eyes off of the road. Seeing what’s directly in front of your vehicle and looking ahead at upcoming conditions is essential to safe driving. Stopping to look at something inside your car or to the side of it could be disastrous. This is especially true when driving at high speeds. Examples of visual distractions include:
- Looking at a traffic accident instead of the road
- Admiring scenery
- Looking at you car’s infotainment system
- Looking for an object you’ve dropped
- Looking at your passengers while talking to them
Having two hands on the steering wheel at all times is an essential element of safe driving. Manual distractions are ones that make you take one or both hands off of the steering wheel. This can limit your ability to make sudden movements, such as swerving to avoid a meandering bicyclist or a large chunk of debris on the road. For maximum control of your vehicle, you should always have two hands on the steering wheel. Distractions that can prevent that include:
- Using your mobile phone
- Applying makeup
- Adjusting cabin temperature
- Changing radio stations
- Reaching for objects
Avoiding Arizona Distracted Driving Accidents
Now that you’re familiar with the three types of Arizona distracted driving causes, the next step is learning what you can do to avoid them. For the most part, it comes down to vigilance and establishing safe driving habits. There is a long “to do” list of simple things that can sometimes be easy to forget. For your convenience, Lerner and Rowe’s team of personal injury lawyers has assembled them for you.
Here’s what you should remember to do in order to avoid distractions:
- Always keep your eyes on the road
- Focus your attention on what’s immediately in front of your vehicle
- Only use your mobile phone in hands-free mode
- Keep conversations at a low volume and to a minimum
- Keep your car’s radio at a reasonable volume
- Always keep two hands on the steering wheel
- Enter your GPS destinations before starting your trip
- Use infotainment system voice commands instead of manual controls
- Take advantage of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto voice controls
- Should you feel mentally or physically fatigued, pull over for a quick rest
Injured By a Distracted Driver? Call Lerner and Rowe.
Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys hopes that you use the information above to sharpen your driving habits and reinforce what you already know. Please make sure that your friends and family are aware of how grave Arizona distracted driving can be and know what they can do to avoid it. Should you get into a car wreck due to a distracted driver, please contact us immediately.
No matter the day of the week, Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys is available to help you 24/7. You can contact our representative by phone at 602-977-1900 and through the Internet via encrypted contact form or LiveChat. Consultations are free and we do not charge any fees unless your case is won.