Take a moment to view the clock that is on your phone. Now count the amount of seconds it took you to grab that phone, view/unlock the screen and then return to read the paper where you left off. Now if you were driving then you would potentially been part of a percentage of other drivers getting into car accidents or cause of an accident. Distracted Driving, the practice of driving a motor vehicle while engaged in another activity, is quietly causing a staggering amount of serious car accidents. There are three main types of distractions. The manual distraction means you take one or both of your hands off the wheel, for example to grab a drink from the cup holder or to help your kids fasten their seat belts. The visual distraction implies taking your eyes off the road to look at an accident site or check your phone display to see who is calling. Finally, the cognitive distraction means taking your mind off driving. This happens when you daydream about a holiday or talk to someone using a hands-free device. My mission is to remind all drivers how dangerous and unpredictable the road still is.
The study shows the causes of these distractions occur when the driver is using an electronic device, reaching for an object, looking elsewhere besides the road, eating or applying cosmetics. Performing such an action is the leading cause of most auto accidents. Many drivers will say “But I know how to multitask,” or “I do it all the time.” Our brains do not perform two tasks at the same time, they switch between tasks fast enough for us not to realize it is happening. “The fact is that multitasking, as most people understand it, is a myth that has been promulgated by the “technological-industrial complex” to make overly scheduled and stressed-out people feel productive and efficient” (Taylor). This switching of one’s focus from one thing to another is what makes you react slowly if you are switching attention from the road to some other activity while driving.
According to a study released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI), about 80 percent of vehicle collisions and 65 percent of near collisions involve some form of driver distraction. Effective in California, January 1, 2017, it is illegal to drive while holding and using an electronic wireless communications device, unless the device is mounted on the windshield similar to a GPS or is mounted to a vehicle’s dashboard as long as it does not hinder the view of the road. “The driver may use a feature or function with the motion of a single swipe or touch. This does not apply to manufacturer-installed systems that are embedded in a vehicle” (DMV). In order to safely drive a car, you must give the road the full attention. Distracted driving is dangerous because whereas drunk driving usually occurs at night, automobile accidents caused by distracted driving are all day.
Visual and mental attention is key to safe driving, yet many in-vehicle technologies can cause drivers to lose sight and focus of the road ahead. Hands-free, voice-command features and other interactive technologies are increasingly common in new vehicles but potentially may create visual and mental distractions that unintentionally provide drivers a false sense of security about their safety behind the wheel. Just because a technology is available in your vehicle, does not mean it is safe to use while driving. According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2016, a total of 3,450 people, including 562 outside of vehicles, such as pedestrians and bicyclists, died in traffic accidents linked to distracted driving. This is about nine percent of all fatal crashes. These types of organization are using April as the month to raise awareness about distracted driving. One way to do so is by mobilizing law enforcement officers across the US to look out for drivers texting or using their phone behind the wheel through the “U Drive, U Text, U Pay” campaign. This campaign is designed to aid law enforcement officers in their efforts to keep distracted drivers off the road
No one should text and drive or eat and drive or taking their eyes off the road. Be an example for others and if you need to text or talk on the phone, it is best to pull over to a safe place. Primarily set rules for yourself and your household regarding distracted driving while behind a wheel of any motor vehicle. If you are a first time driver behind the wheel, ask questions about the dangers of distracted driving. To parents of newly licenced drivers, discuss the fact that taking their eyes off the road, even for a few seconds, it can cause an injury or even death. Inform family, friends and organizations to which you belong to about the importance of driving without distractions. Simple small changes to our daily routine can lead to big difference in many ways for the safety of ourselves and loved ones.
DMV “Driver Distractions (FFDL 28)” Department of Motor Vehicles. April 2019. Researcher, www.dmv.ca.gov.
This page issued under California Department of Motor Vehicles depicts the many different causes of distracted driving. This page provides different kinds of distractions, such as eating and driving, usage of cell phones, eyes off the road, office work on the road, etc. Main focus on driving are staying focus, pay attention and expect the unexpected. I am using this source as a mean to understand the difference of distracted driving and what the dmv thinks on the subject. The credibility of the source is in regards in order to receive a license in the state of california, a driver must be familiar with rules and regulations.
DMV “Distracted Driving: Just Drive” California Office of Traffic Safety. April 2019. Researcher, www.ots.ca.gov.
This page gives a summary of the actions issued by California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) regarding to Distracted Driving. Such as “Put Your Phone Down. Just Drive” public awareness and education campaign or “Silence the Distraction” in 2015. I am using this information as an example of how other organizations are spreading the dangers of distracted driving. Uploaded by the Office of Traffic Safety and located on CA.gov, assuming the credibility is effective if it was allowed to be uploaded.
Professional Safety. “Oregon Takes Positive Approach to Combat Distracted Driving” Nov 2017, Vol 62 Issue 11, p10-10. EBSCOhost http://web.a.ebscohost.com.chaffey.
The article discusses a campaign by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and Lifesaver, an app that blocks cell phone use when driving, to decrease distracted driving through a competition for organizations and schools to drive safely. I am using this article as a potential solutions to reduce distracting driving. Professional Safety is issued under Oregon OSHA, a neighboring state to California where OSHA is an agency of the US government under the Department of Labor with the responsibility of ensuring safety at work and a healthful work environment.
Shaaban, Khaled “Journal of Advanced Transportation” March 2019, p1-10, EBSCOhost,
This journal contains a research establish in Qatar, a rapidly developing country in the arabian gulf region, on the installation and use of two smartphone application. One on distraction prevention application and real life traffic information and navigation application. I am using this research as a means of what potential applications in a region with unique social and cultural environment react to distracted driving countermeasures. The author affiliations is Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering/Qatar Transportation and Traffic Safety Center, Qatar University
Taylor, Jim “Technology: Myth of Multitasking” March 2011, Psychology Today
This article breaks down the process of Multitasking and how we mentally think doing more things at once is a sign of productivity. I am using this research as backup for that claim that multitasking is a potential myth hence as stated in the article goes by what we believe to be true. Jim Taylor specializes in the psychology of sport and parenting.He received his Bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College and a Master’s and Ph.D Degree from the University of Colorado. Jim is currently an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco.