Understanding the different types of distracted driving

On Behalf of | Jul 13, 2022 | Motor vehicle accidents |

There are many causes of motor vehicle accidents in Connecticut. One of the leading causes is distracted driving. Distracted driving can be classified into three categories: visual, manual, and cognitive.

What are visual distractions?

Visual distractions are anything that takes your eyes off the road. One of the most common visual distractions is cell phone use. Other visual distractions can include changing the radio station, looking for something in the car, or rubbernecking, which is looking at accidents or other events happening on the side of the road.

Even if a driver only takes their eyes off the road for a few seconds, it can be enough time to cause an accident. When a driver is not looking at the road, they are not able to see obstacles or other vehicles, which can lead to one or multiple motor vehicle accidents.

What are manual distractions?

Manual distractions are anything that takes your hands off the steering wheel. One of the most common manual distractions is cell phone use. Other manual distractions can include eating, drinking, smoking, adjusting the radio or fiddling with other objects in the car.

What are cognitive distractions?

Cognitive distractions are anything that takes your mind off the task of driving. One of the most common cognitive distractions is cell phone use. Other cognitive distractions can include talking to passengers, daydreaming or being preoccupied with other thoughts. Cognitive distraction is especially dangerous because it can cause a driver to zone out and not pay attention to the road, which can lead to an accident.

The best way to avoid distracted driving is to put away all distractions before getting behind the wheel. This means turning off your cell phone, putting away any loose objects in the car and making sure you are not tired or under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you are going to be on the road for a long time, make sure to take breaks so you can rest and not get too tired. If you are feeling sleepy, pull over and take a nap.