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Texting and other forms of distracted driving have become an epidemic on roadways in California and across the nation. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately nine people are killed and more than 1,000 people are injured in crashes involving distracted drivers every day. While many of us already know that texting is an extremely dangerous form of distracted driving, many behaviors can fall under the category of a distraction behind the wheel. Even simple things like eating or changing the radio station can be considered distractions. Listed below are the three main types of distractions behind the wheel.

Three Types of Distractions

  1. Visual: taking your eyes off of the road.
  2. Manual: taking your hands off of the wheel.
  3. Cognitive: taking your mind off of driving.

Visual Distractions

As a driver, your eyes should always be on the road. Any activity that takes your eyes off of the road, such as looking at your phone, can be extremely dangerous. Sending or receiving a text message can take your eyes off of the road for about five seconds. At 55 miles per hour, this is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field blindfolded.

Manual Distractions

Manual distractions are tasks that take your hands off of the wheel. This can also involve texting or using your phone. Additionally, this can include activities like using the radio, programming a GPS system or eating and grooming. In the event of a roadway emergency, you need both hands on the wheel to drive safely and defensively.

Cognitive Distractions

Finally, one of the most dangerous and overlooked forms of distraction is cognitive. If your mind is on anything other than the task of driving, you’re engaging in distracted driving. This is why hands-free devices haven’t been proven to be substantially safer than handheld devices.

Distracted Driving Accidents

As a motorist, it’s important to understand that many distracted driving behaviors can fall into more than one category. For example, texting is a visual, manual and cognitive distraction. If you have been injured or if you have lost a loved one in a crash involving a suspected distracted driver in San Diego, along with the Central Coast or in any of the surrounding communities, contact the skilled and proven team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. at 1.800.GO.HARRIS for a free case consultation today.

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