Tips for Overcoming Distractions On The Road | Florida Car Accident Injury Lawyers Whittel & Melton


The open road provides an exciting sense of adventure and freedom, but it also carries several risks, particularly when there are distractions that come into play. Distractions behind the wheel can have disastrous results, whether it is glancing at a text message, fiddling with the radio, or just daydreaming. April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month—a great opportunity to refocus and take ownership of the decisions we make when driving. There are many ways drivers can become distracted while driving. Here are some of the most common ways drivers lose their focus on the road:

  • Electronic gadgets: Due to the widespread use of cellphones and entertainment systems in cars, drivers are seriously distracted by electronic gadgets. Distracted driving can occur when texting, making calls, or scrolling through apps. If it is too tempting to check your phone, consider placing it in your console or keeping it in your backseat where it is out of reach until you get to your destination.
  • Manual distractions: Changing the radio, eating, drinking, or reaching for items inside the car can all cause drivers to take their hands off the wheel, which impairs their control of their vehicle.
  • Visual distractions: Reading a billboard, admiring the view, or even glancing at a GPS unit are just a few examples of actions that can divert a driver’s attention from the road and increase the chance of an accident.
  • Cognitive distractions: Drivers’ ability to respond to changing traffic conditions can be delayed by mental diversions like daydreaming, engaging in chats with fellow passengers or children, or even being wrapped up in personal concerns.

The Dangers of Distracted Driving

Distracted driving claimed 3,308 lives in 2022, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Additionally, according to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, even a two-second distraction from the road increases the likelihood of being involved in an accident by double. Here are some tips for staying focused while driving:

  • Limit your use of electronic devices: If you must make a call, try using hands-free technology and keep your phone out of reach. Before you begin driving, program your GPS or set your music playlists.
    Remind yourself to stay alert: Focus on the task at hand and avoid distractions.
  • Prepare before you drive: Adjust the mirrors, seat posture, and climate controls before you begin driving. To reduce the need for physical distractions, make sure anything you might need during your journey is easily accessible.
  • Take Breaks: Stop at a safe spot and take a quick break if you feel emotionally or physically exhausted. Stretch your legs, grab some fresh air, and refuel before getting back on the road.
  • Reduce cognitive diversions: When it is safe, engage in meaningful conversations with passengers, but steer clear of issues that require intense focus. If you notice that your thoughts are wandering, take a moment to return your focus to the road.

During the month of April, you may see more police on the roads as part of the NHTSA’s national campaign Put the Phone Away or Pay. This campaign serves as a warning to drivers about the grave risks of texting and driving, as well as the associated penalties and fines.

Remember, when you are behind the wheel, your top concern should always be driving safely. If you or a loved one have been injured in a distracted driving crash, our Florida Car Crash Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can help. Call us for a FREE consultation at 866-608-5529 or contact us online 24/7.

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