The National Highway Safety Administration defines distracted driving as any activity that diverts a driver’s attention while operating a vehicle: talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, applying makeup, reaching for your bag, holding a pet, and fiddling with the stereo, entertainment or navigation system. However, texting while driving is the most alarming and serious distraction. Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for, on average, 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed, which leaves plenty of time to miss changing road conditions, pedestrians or bikers, sudden stops, cars changing lanes, etc.
While there are laws and fines in place to put stop distracted driving, there’s plenty we can do to prevent ourselves from driving distracted and make the roads safer for all. Let’s start with these helpful tips:
The Pennsylvania Association for Justice has partnered with EndDD.org and the Casey Feldman Foundation to provide drivers and parents with resources to educate themselves and their driving-age children on the importance of staying focused behind the wheel to help stop distracted driving. PennDOT has its own resource site, Just Drive PA.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a distracted driver, contact our office today. In the meantime, pay attention when you’re on the road. The next text message you send or distraction you pay attention to at the wheel might cost you a lot more than a traffic ticket.