Unless you are a computer, you can’t multitask. You might be able to quickly switch from task to task, but the idea that a person can effectively perform two or more actions simultaneously is just plain false. Whether it’s at home, at work, or on the road, you’re at your best when you concentrate on one activity.
April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. While drivers should always keep their eyes — and minds — on the road, this month is a good time to remind yourself, and everyone in your life who drives a vehicle for personal or professional use, that when behind the wheel, the only things that matter are the road in front of you and the other vehicles around you.
Don’t text and drive. You’ve likely heard that warning before, and with good reason. Nationwide, 3,450 people were killed in 2016 and 391,000 were injured in 2015 in distracted-driving accidents1, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Mobile device use of any kind — talking on the phone, changing the song on a music app, entering a destination on a navigation app, among others — should wait until you have reached your destination. Laws regarding cell phone use differ from state to state, but potential consequences remain the same: death or serious injury.
Technology isn’t the only source of interference in the car. Those fries you just ordered in the drive-thru or your messy meatball sub provide plenty of disruptions. But no matter how tasty, they aren’t worth causing an otherwise preventable crash.
Passengers also draw drivers’ attention away from the road. While a light conversation can help a driver stave off fatigue during a lengthy journey, loud and consistent noise can cause confusion. It’s up to the driver to maintain control of passengers’ behavior.
There are many excuses to take your attention off of driving, but none of them make a difference if your trip ends abruptly. So, if something threatens to take your attention away from responsible operation of your vehicle, ignore it. It can wait.
1 Source: https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/distracted-driving. Accessed March 2019.
Published Date:March 15, 2019
Categories: Risk Management Corner