Distracted driving remains a common and dangerous problem on roadways in the Hoosier State and across the U.S. In fact, according to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, distracted driving was the cause of more than 3,100 traffic fatalities in 2019 alone.
Thanks to an aggressive educational campaign from state officials, many Hoosiers recognize the importance of stashing their smartphones until they reach their destination. There are other forms of distracted driving, though. Here are four types of distracted driving motorists should avoid.
1. Visual distractions
Visual distractions include anything that takes a driver’s eyes away from the driving task. Billboards, other cars, GPS devices, car radios or even beautiful scenery may fall into this category.
2. Mental distractions
No one can exclusively focus on driving when behind the wheel. Still, if a driver’s mind wanders, he or she may be at increased risk of having a serious car accident. For example, mentally preparing for a business meeting may mentally distracted a driver.
3. Auditory distractions
On the road, drivers should listen to the sounds of both their vehicles and the outside environment. After all, not only may drivers need to pull over to address a mechanical problem, but they may also need to stop for an approaching ambulance or police car. Therefore, listening to loud or up-tempo music may be distracting.
4. Manual distractions
Drivers must position their hands and feet in appropriate places to control their vehicles. Taking a hand off the steering wheel to change the radio station or a foot off the accelerator to sit cross-legged may produce unsafe driving conditions.
While drivers typically do not have to have a formal driving posture, keeping both hands on the steering wheel is necessary to respond quickly and appropriate to driving emergencies.