Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving

distracted drivingDistracted driving is a major problem across the country, causing thousands of injuries every year, according to Distraction.gov. In fact, the number of accidents caused by this dangerous habit continues to increase annually. As such, it is crucial for us to all partake in making the roads safer by doing what we can to avoid accidents caused by distracted driving.

Here are some tips you can follow to help you keep your focus on driving and the road ahead:

  • Maintain your attention and focus on the act of driving: According to the American Automobile Association, drivers should always actively check the road ahead and remain aware of others on the road, including bicyclists and pedestrians. Never allow anything to divert your attention away from driving.
  • Make sure you are comfortable before you start the engine: Getting comfortable before you start the engine and begin driving is critical. You want to make sure that your mirrors, seat, navigation system, air conditioner, and entertainment system are all properly set to avoid fiddling around with anything once you are on the road.
  • Try to minimize or limit your interaction with passengers: It might seem rude to be quiet or to not engage in conversations with your passengers, but interacting and conversing with them can be immensely distracting. Even if your passengers are only talking amongst themselves, this can be a distraction, so ask that they try to remain still, buckled up, and keep the volume down.
  • Do not eat or drink: If you need to eat, try to do so before you embark on your trip, or pull over to safe area where you can eat a snack. If you are taking a long road trip and absolutely need to eat while you drive, it is recommended that you avoid messy foods that are difficult to easily consume or handle.
  • Secure any loose objects: We keep all kinds of things in our vehicles, including our children’s toys, a purse or a briefcase. Before you begin driving, make sure these items are secured, so that you do not have to attempt to reach for them if they move while you are driving.
  • Avoid the use of electronic devices: Refrain from checking your cell phone or any other electronic device while you are driving. If you happen to be using your phone for navigational purposes, obtain a cradle that can keep the device visible without requiring you to move your head. You should never attempt to text, send emails, surf the web, or play games while driving.

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