You’ve probably heard the term “distracted driving,” but have you ever thought about the mechanics of it?
At a basic level, it means a driver is not driving as safely as they should, but there are actually three ways that distractions can work.
1. Visual distractions
This is the classic one. Someone looking at something other than the road is likely to miss something happening on the road.
Examples can include looking out the window at a billboard ad, gazing at themselves in the mirror to check their hair, or looking at the passenger they are talking to. Drivers need to keep their eyes on the road at all times.
2. Physical distractions
The guy in front of you who just emerged from a drive-in restaurant. Did he stop and eat his food in their parking lot? Or is he unwrapping it and devouring it while also trying to control his vehicle? Steering wheels are designed for two hands, so any task that requires one or both hands to be taken off the wheel is a dangerous distraction.
3. Cognitive distractions
Some people use their drive time to think. Others tend to daydream. Others use it to learn, listen to podcasts or teach themselves via language courses. There is so much happening on your average road that giving it your full attention when driving is crucial. Anyone thinking about other stuff is not thinking about the road.
As you can see, it’s easy to get caught up in any of these distractions. Yet, drivers hold a responsibility toward all other road users, so if someone injures you because they were distracted, you should be able to claim compensation.