Being a safe, responsible driver entails following all traffic rules. You must also operate your vehicle at the proper rate of speed for the road and weather conditions, as well as remain alert to other drivers.
Responsible motorists also do all they can to avoid distracted driving behaviors. While they may seem harmless, these behaviors can actually cause serious accidents and injuries. This guide explains how to conduct yourself safely when driving.
Three types of distracted driving
There are three general behaviors that can put you and other motorists in peril. Additionally, these behaviors are often combined, which creates an even riskier situation when sharing the road with others.
Visual distractions occur when you take your eyes off the road. For example, looking away to adjust your radio is an example of a visual distraction. Manual distractions are those that require you to remove your hands from the wheel. In addition to the above example, eating behind the wheel is another common form of manual distraction. There are also cognitive distractions, which refer to situations where your mind is not on operating the vehicle.
How to stay safe behind the wheel
You must avoid driving distractions every time you are behind the wheel. When it comes to the radio and GPS, make sure you set everything up before you get on the road. Never eat behind the wheel, even when you are in a hurry. If you are driving with passengers, try to keep conversations to a minimum.
If you are driving in a vehicle with a distracted driver, request that they keep their mind on the task at hand while driving. You should also instruct any teen drivers in your family to be aware of their habits, as younger drivers tend to have a higher risk of distracted driving.