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Home » General » Understanding the Different Types of Distracted Drivers

Understanding the Different Types of Distracted Drivers

Understanding the Different Types of Distracted Drivers

When you hear someone talk about distracted driving, what do you think of? If you are like many people, you may imagine someone on their cell phone, texting while driving, or scrolling through social media.

While texting and driving is a huge problem, it is just a symptom of a bigger issue. To understand the issue of distracted driving and how to prevent future accidents, you need to learn more about the different types of distracted driving that occur.

Is Distracted Driving Really That Dangerous?

Distracted driving is a huge issue on roads across the country. In fact, countless studies have shown that distracted driving accounts for almost 25% of all accidents in the U.S. In fact, distracted driving is just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated.

The best way to reduce distracted driving accidents is by raising awareness about why it happens and which distractions are the riskiest.

Here, you can learn more about distracted driving and what to do to remain safe while on the road.

Understanding the Different Types of Distracted Driving

There are three basic types of distracted driving. These include the following:

  • Visual
  • Manual
  • Cognitive

To better understand what distracted driving entails, keep reading.

Visual Distractions

Visual distractions include anything that causes you to take your eyes off the road. Some examples of visual distractions include the following:

  • Looking or talking to passengers in the vehicle
  • Looking at a crash on the side of the road
  • Being distracted by a tube dancer at a car wash or car dealership

If you take your eyes off the road, you will lose awareness of the traffic signals and what the car ahead of you is doing. This makes you much more likely to be involved in a T-bone or rear-end collision.

Manual Distractions

A manual distraction occurs when you take your hands off the steering wheel. You may do this to reach for your phone, change the radio, comb your hair, or take a sip of your drink. Unfortunately, distractions like this will reduce your reaction time to potential hazards and obstacles, such as a person or animal crossing the road or a car merging into your lane.

Cognitive Distractions

A cognitive distraction is the most dangerous kind. It is also the hardest to define. Cognitive distractions occur when something distracts your mind. If you start thinking about something else, then it means you are not focusing your mind and attention on the task of driving.

This includes things like daydreaming; however, it can also include singing along to a song on the radio or arguing with someone in your car. Cognitive distractions are considered more dangerous because drivers stop focusing on their vehicles. This means they will not slow down, even if a crash is about to occur.

Dangers of Cognitive Distractions 

A cognitive distraction is the most challenging to fight because many people do not realize they are distracted. What may start as just a thought about what is for dinner can cause a train of thought that results in you driving in almost a trance.

While it is often simple to fight visual and manual distractions, cognitive distractions require your total focus. If you think you will start thinking about something other than driving or the car in front of you, you should refocus your mind.

What Is a Triple Threat?

Each of the distractions described above can cause an accident on its own. However, the worst types of distractions are the ones that include all three. These distractions cause you to take your hands off the steering wheel, take your eyes away from the road, and your mind away from what you are doing. These are referred to as a “triple threat.”

Some of the most common types of triple threats include:

  • Eating while driving
  • Reaching for something in your car
  • Cell Phone use

If you engage in these types of distractions, you will probably “phase out” driving based on your instincts alone. If you engage in this, you may not realize you are in danger until you hit someone.

Contact Our Law Firm if a Distracted Driver Hits You

You have legal rights if you are involved in an accident with a distracted driver. One is to recover compensation for your losses and injuries. The best way to get the compensation you are entitled to is to work with an experienced and knowledgeable distracted driving attorney to help.

At Zimmet & Zimmet, we have represented many personal injury clients and can offer you the same level of attention and representation to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today or a free consultation.

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