I’m driving peacefully in my lane, listening to some peaceful music. A distracted driver behind me drifts out of the lane speedily, texting while driving. It seems he was in a hurry. He wanted to get into my lane but didn’t realize my car was close to his car as he was busy with his mobile phone.
I gave him a quick honk and had to lower my speed to avoid any collision. He quickly realized he made a mistake and kept his phone down.
In the United States, distractions put drivers at risk on nearly every road. Moreover, fatal vehicle accidents contribute to at least 9% of all highway accidents. Distracted driving is one of the major causes of vehicle accidents.
Traffic safety experts classify distractions into three main types: Manual, Visual, and Cognitive.
Distracted driving is when you’re involved in some other activity while driving that takes your focus away from the road.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 2,841 people died because of distracted driving in 2018. In the United States, around nine people are killed every day, and 1,000 people are injured in crashes due to distracted drivers.
Overall, there is a decline in vehicular fatalities. However, the number of road deaths due to distracted driving has grown to 16%. Around two-thirds of distracted drivers are the only ones in the car during the time of the crash.
Moreover, 40% of the accidents caused due to distracted driving occur on urban roads, and nearly 60% do not comprise another vehicle.
Types of Distractions
There are a lot of reasons that can distract the driver’s attention. However, three main types of distractions are visual, manual, and cognitive.
Use of Cellphone
Texting while driving or talking on the phone is one of the most common causes of distractions. According to a report by Zendrive, phone addicts are drivers that spend more than 10% of their time looking at their smartphones while driving.
The number increased from 4.6% to 8% in 2018. Furthermore, the report says that these people use their phones 4.3 times more than a normal driver. As the epidemic of distracted driving spreads, the report says that 20% of the driving population will be defined as phone addicts by 2020.
Teens and youths make the largest group of distracted drivers. Every one million cell phone subscriptions give rise to a 19% increase in distracted driving accidents. Currently, around 275 million Americans own smartphones, and 81% talk on their cellphone while driving.
Smartphones distract drivers as they take their eyes off the road and focus them on their phone screens. Moreover, they can lose control while using their hands to hold the phone rather than applying them on the wheel.
Texting is one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving. Drivers who text while driving are 23 times more likely to cause an accident than non-distracted drivers. Nonetheless, texting classifies all visual, manual, and cognitive distractions. Hence, it’s quite dangerous.
The District of Columbia and at least 39 states have laid down rules and laws to restrict the use of mobile phones while driving.
We all know liquor is an old threat to safe driving. Drunk driving accounts for one-third of the road accidents in the U.S, taking around 11,000 lives a year. Moreover, men are liable for 80% of all misfortunes of alcohol-impaired driving.
Eating while Driving
Eating and drinking while driving reduces the amount of focus on the road. Often, when drivers eat or drink, they balance cups, switch hands, take bites, and shift their eyes off the road. Sometimes, they even take their hands away from the steering wheel.
Drivers need to start pulling over if they have to eat or drink. Focusing on one thing is crucial rather than multitasking, which can be quite dangerous.
Adjusting while Driving
Another reason for distracted driving is adjusting seats and the steering wheel position while driving. Other activities like changing volume controls are also common reasons for distracted driving.
Moreover, children crying, heated arguments, or throwing tantrums are other causes of distracted driving. General conversations and small talk are often less problematic. Passengers and drivers can modify or pause their discussions accordingly.
Women usually tend to apply makeup, comb their hair, or remove clothing while driving. Such activities are highly dangerous as they can cause accidents. Men, on the other hand, try multitasking, by talking on the phone, eating while driving, etc. When both hands are occupied, who is driving the car then?
OnMyWay Reducing Distracted Driving
Though there are several reasons for distracted driving, technology is helping us solve this issue. OnMyWay app is assisting in cutting down the number of distracted driving accidents. This app will pay you if you take steps to avoid distracted driving.
The app automatically detects when you’re driving over 10 MPH by leveraging your location data, and it disables apps or text alerts. It then pays you 5 cents per mile for not using your phone while driving. Also, OnMyWay app users get paid two extra cents for miles driven by other people who they refer to the service.
Moreover, you’re not only paid for not using your phone while driving. OnMyWay app users can spend the earned money on deals and offers listed on the app. They can enjoy discounts every day if they drive safely. From electronics to clothing, travel deals to accessories, users can scroll through numerous offers and use their earnings.
Further, the OnMyWay app cash-out feature will let you exchange your OnMyWay Cash for Store Cards, Cash Cards, and Travel Deals. You can check out the OnMyWay app reviews to know how people have enjoyed taking the necessary steps to avoid distracted driving.
Driving is an attention-demanding activity, and drivers should avoid multitasking. OnMyWay App encourages individuals to be responsible and prevent the dangers of distracted driving. Our modern-day world is a busy one, which forces us to talk on the cell phone while driving.
It is essential to keep your eyes on the road and avoid any distractions. If at all you need to check your phone, make a call, or drink your coffee, it is always best to pull over.
While the devastating effects of drinking and driving have been clear for so many years, the implications of distracted driving are still growing. That discrepancy should be a call for action for every citizen and not only drivers.