Distracted Driving: Common Distractions

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Most Floridians know that the roads and highways are dangerous places and that it’s important to take the task of driving very seriously. According to a recent report, Florida ranks #1 amongst all states when it comes to automobile accidents caused by distracted driving. While driving behind the wheel of any motor vehicle, it is important to be aware of some of the most common distractions that people deal with every day.  Here are few dangerous distractions to look out for:

Other Passengers

Typically, when people engage in a conversation, they make eye contact with one another while communicating.  However, some drivers have trouble separating such typical social interaction with what is appropriate behind the wheel.  If someone is distracting you while you are driving, let them know if they are being too loud or if they are hindering your ability to drive safely. No one wants to get into an accident, and if someone is bothering the driver, they may not realize it.

Cell Phones

Texting and driving is commonly known to be extremely dangerous for drivers of any age. Even if you are a “good” driver, you won’t be able to react to obstacles that come into your path when you are looking down at your phone. In the past few years, Florida law has recently banned the use of cell phones for typing or reading messages and other states have or are working on similar laws. However, this does not serve to ban cell phones altogether. Apps such as SnapChat that are used to send videos and pictures may still be used but they are equally, if not more, distracting than text messaging while driving.

Something Else in the Car

Many distractions are caused by something other than texting or other passengers. Things such as spilling a beverage, searching for something in the glove box, reaching for something between the seats, or fumbling with your GPS or radio can lead to a crash. It is important to prepare things like beverages, music, and directions before you start driving. Even though things like GPSs are made for use in vehicles, they can be a major distraction behind the wheel. If you have to locate directions or change your music while driving, try to use voice activated features.