brier February 4, 2014 No Comments

When you drive with distractions you  are putting yourself, those in your car, everyone else on the road and pedestrians/bicyclists at risk.  People are 4 times more likely to have an accident when using a mobile device which is why the use of them while driving has been banned in 11 states.

According to a new report, being overly distracted, or even a little, while driving can be deadly.  Teen drivers are much more likely to be involved in a fatal car accident when they were being distracted at the time of the incident.  April has been declared National Driving Distracted Awareness Month.  Erie insurance has comprised a great list of what some of the biggest distractions while driving are.

Have you ever committed any of the 10 deadliest distractions while driving?

  1. Smoking Related:  Of the more than 65,000 people killed in car crashes over the past two years, one in 10 crashes involved at least one distracted driver.  This can be from smoking, lighting up, ashing your cigarette or opening the pack.  People also have had instances where the lit cigarette is dropped which can cause great distraction while driving and injury.
  2. Mirrors, Seats & Navigation: Anything that takes your eyes off the road for even a split second can lead to a fatal crash.  Checking or changing the navigation, or adjusting your seats and mirrors.
  3. Pets & Insects:  It is really essential to have your pet secured in a carrier or pet car-seat.  It is safer for them and leaves no distraction for you.  Several accidents also occur when an insect flies into the car or is crawling around and you try to catch it. 
  4. Food & Beverage:  2% of drivers in fatal car accidents have been eating or drinking.  Your car should not be treated like a restaurant on wheels. Give yourself a couple minutes to stop somewhere for a quick coffee or snack to avoid an accident from this risk.
  5. Loose Devices: Also 2% of fatal crashes are caused by the use of devices. Navigational systems that are not built in, headphones (which should never be worn while driving due to the fact you will not hear horns or other traffic sounds) laptops, tablets and etc.
  6. Radio & Climate Controls: Changing the station, adjusting the temperature, CD’s and MP3 like devices can all lead you into an accident. It is best to only adjust these when stopped.
  7. Passengers: Looking at or talking to other people in the car while driving causes 5% of fatal crashes.
  8. Cell Phone Use:  Over 12% of fatal crashes are due to cell phone use. Texting and driving has become a deadly epidemic that several states are trying to prevent with strict laws.  Currently it is illegal in 39 states. When talking on the phone it is best to always use a handsfree device or speaker. For ultimate safety it is best to not use the cell phone at all while driving.
  9. Rubbernecking or Outside Distractions:  The phrase “eyes on the road” and “keep your eyes on the wheel” should be taken to heart. Statistics prove that paying attention to things going on outside the car are the cause for roughly 7% of fatal crashes.
  10. Driving in “a fog”: More than  half of fatal accidents are caused by someone daydreaming of not concentrating on the road.


2.18.2014 update:

A forgotten distraction is also children in the backseat.  Without realizing we often tend our childrends needs while driving which can lead to major distractions and accidents.  To see how real this is a local father has shared a message that he hopes will prevent others from going through what his family has.