Reducing Driving Distraction Caused By High-Tech Device Use
While manufacturers ramp up their efforts to put sophisticated high-tech infotainment systems in cars, government agencies and the insurance industry warn about dangers. USA Today reported that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued voluntary guidelines for auto manufacturers, urging them to restrict button pushing and manual operation of infotainment systems while drivers are driving. The emphasis is on preventing drivers from taking their eyes off the road for more than a few seconds and that no task should take more than 12 consecutive seconds to perform.
Although NHTSA is addressing future driving distraction from the manufacturing perspective of in-car systems, it reported that 98 percent of accidents caused by distraction did not result from high-tech systems in cars.
What can you do on a personal level to avoid using your digital devices and other high-tech gadgets while driving?
- Turn off your cell phone and put it out of reach. Doing this may be harder than it sounds. People are so used to having their cell phone handy for multiple uses today that the idea of putting it aside can take discipline. However, studies show that most car accidents occur when people drive close to their homes. Surely, you can live without your cell phone for five minutes.
- Set your GPS before you start driving. Plan ahead by inputting your information into your GPS before you start driving. If you need to change your destination while driving, pull off the road and make the adjustments.
Be careful when driving. In 2011, NHTSA reported that Texas had 3,016 traffic accident fatalities, including car, truck, motorcycle and pedestrian accidents fatalities. When a person’s distracted driving causes your car accident, a personal injury lawyer may be able to help you recover compensation for damages.