In this day and age, distracted driving is common in conversation and complaints about commuting. And while there are multiple categories of distracted driving, manual distractions get a lot of verbal real estate in mentions of reckless driving. Manual distracted driving at its core is simply taking your hands off the wheel. And while some tasks don’t need hand-eye coordination, a lot of the time, where the hands lead, the eyes follow.
The kingpin of the manual distractions seems to be using cell phones. With a bounty of mobile apps on the market, cell phone users have plenty of sources seeking their attention. And while the current conversation revolves heavily around cell phone use, manual distracted driving was a problem long before society carried a computer in its pocket.
Common kinds of manual distracted driving:
Eating/drinking: Whether you’re sipping down some coffee during your morning commute or are enjoying fries you picked up from the drive-through window, those moments add up.
Pets: A study from the AAA shows that 17% of owners used restraint when transporting their dogs. While this study sought out answers from dog owners, the implications of it bring a message that can reach all animal owners. Even if the pet is obedient, a distraction could lead the pet to move around, causing a disturbance that requires more than a stern word to stop.
Finding the right music: During long and tedious commutes, music can make a world of difference. Adjusting the dial to find the right station or change the volume can account for small attention gaps where the eyes turn away from the road.
Manual distracted driving can take many forms and doesn’t always take up a lot of time. But sometimes the difference between a safe commute and an unfortunate accident is in those brief seconds where the coast seems clear. If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident where distracted driving may have been the culprit, reach out to a legal professional for aid.