One of the most common causes of severe and fatal accidents in the U.S. is distracted driving. Most of us tend to think of cell phone usage when we think of distracted driving, but this dangerous habit actually compasses much more than using your phone while behind the wheel of a motor vehicle. Many of us understand the dangers associated with speeding, drinking and driving, and other forms of reckless driving, but distracted driving is often not taken as seriously as it should be. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), however, about 9 people are killed and more than 1,000 are injured in crashes that involve a distracted driver every day.
Here is a list of some tips that can help you avoid a distracted driving accident that could cost your life or the life of another motorist or pedestrian:
- Turn off your phone: Our phones are so important to us that the mere thought of turning it off can cause an overwhelming sense of anxiety. Just keep in mind that whatever you think might be important is not more important than your safety or your life. Turn it off, put it out of reach, or turn it around to avoid looking at the screen. Whatever it takes to keep your phone out of sight and out of mind, do it.
- Organize everything to avoid multitasking: Multitasking is great when you are at home or at work, trying to get several things done at once as efficiently as possible, but when you are operating a motor vehicle, you should only be performing one task – driving. To avoid engaging in this distracting behavior, make sure everything you need is as it should be. This means setting up the route on your GPS before starting your car, keeping your morning coffee in the cup holder, and leaving any toll money you might need within reach. You want to make sure that, while you are driving, you are not taking your attention off the road to do multiple things at once.
- Let your passengers take care of some things: You are already doing the driving, so if you have passengers, ask that they help you out while you stay focused on the road. If you need to change the route on the GPS, ask one of them to handle it. If you hate the song on the radio, or want to access a different playlist, ask them to change it. This will take some tempting distractions off your plate, so you can both stay safe.
- Save serious discussions for later: When you are driving, one of the worst things you can do is engage in a serious discussion. It can be so difficult to focus on much else when you dive into an important topic of conversation. Do not put yourself in this position and, instead, save it for another time when you are not on the road.
- Be safe about your smartphone: Not everyone has a separate GPS device and, oftentimes, one’s smartphone is their map and it cannot be turned off. If this applies to you, to avoid getting distracted by texts, you can put it on silent. Some smartphones even have a feature that allows other functions to be turned off when the GPS is in use. Look through your phone’s apps or check out the app store to see what you can do to make your rides a lot safer.
- Turn your drive time into quiet time: It can be difficult to get a little quiet Zen time in your day, so why not take your time behind the wheel as an opportunity to relax, turn off the radio, and enjoy the drive. This can make concentrating on the road a lot easier and lower the risk of an accident occurring.
Distracted Driving Accident Lawyers in Athens
If you were recently injured in a car accident that was caused by a distracted driver, you can pursue compensation to lessen the burden of medical bills and time away from work during this difficult time. At Hall & Collins Injury Law, LLC, our team of distracted driving attorneys in Athens is dedicated to fighting on behalf of the wrongfully injured and will do what it takes to ensure you receive the compensation you need and deserve.
Start your personal injury claim today and contact our legal team at 706-940-7889 to schedule a complimentary consultation.