A recent AAA study has found that driver inattention is a factor in over 1 million accidents a year and has an economic impact of over 40 billion dollars a year.
Most of us are familiar with the causes of distracted driving. These would include texting, using a cell phone, eating and drinking, talking to passengers, grooming, reading a map, using a navigation system, watching a video, and adjusting the radio.
If you watched any television in the last few years, you no doubt have seen public service ads about the serious problems with texting and driving. Studies now show that texting and driving is actually worse than drinking and driving. Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55 mph, that's enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded. Texting while driving has become the most alarming cause of distracted driving in America.
The solution to this growing problem is not easy. Many states and municipalities have passed laws to limit and/or eliminate texting or cell phone use while driving. Does your company have a policy regarding prohibiting the use of cell phones while driving? For those individuals that own and/or manage companies and would like to address this problem in your company, the link below will lead you to a National Safety Council site where you can obtain a free Cell Phone Policy Kit
Listed below are tips that you can share, as well as follow, to avoid distracted driving:
- Do not text or talk on the phone while driving.
- If you must talk or text, pull off the road at a safe point.
- Avoid taking your eyes off the road.
- Keep both hands on the wheel.
- Focus on driving and refrain from eating, smoking, drinking liquids, reading, or any other activity that does not allow you to maintain your focus.
- Make sure you plan your trip ahead of time.
Senior Loss Control Representative