We’re all guilty of taking our eyes off the road, even if it is for a couple seconds. Yet, that short time period could be enough to cause an accident. Is the distraction really worth the risk? April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, a nationally recognized campaign aimed at educating driver on the dangers of driving distracted.
In 2013, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that 3,154 people were killed in crashes involving distracted drivers. Distractions of all kinds are dangerous when behind the wheel: eating or drinking, adjusting the radio or climate controls, reaching or looking for an object, applying makeup, interacting with passengers, and talking on a cell phone.
The most alarming distraction for drivers nowadays, especially young drivers, is texting. The average time your eyes are off the road while texting is five seconds, which at 55mph is enough time to cover the length of a football field, according to research conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute.
The NHTSA offers these tips to help prevent distracted driving:
- Turn off electronic devices and put them out of reach before you start driving.
- Be good role models for young drivers. Parents, talk with your teens about responsible driving.
- Speak up when you are a passenger and your driver uses an electronic device while driving. Offer to make the call for them or read/compose the text so that the driver can focus on the road.
- Always wear your seat belt as this is the best defense against other unsafe drivers.
Interested in a simulator experience that teaches the perils of distracted driving? McGrath Insurance is pleased to host the Arbella Insurance Foundation’s Distractology 101 Tour from Monday, May 18 through Friday, May 22. Appointments last for 45 minutes and will be scheduled from 12 to 8 pm. To sign up, call the Sturbridge Police Department at 508-347-2525 x318.
For more information on the Distractology 101 program, contact McGrath Insurance Group at 800-342-3859 or www.mcgrathinsurance.com.
*This article is written for informational purposes only and should not be construed as providing legal advice.