Whenever you are driving a vehicle and your attention is not on the road, you’re putting yourself, your passengers, other vehicles, and pedestrians in danger. Distracted driving can result when you perform any activity that may shift your full attention from the driving task. Taking your eyes off the road or hands off the steering wheel presents obvious driving risks. Mental activities that take your mind away from driving are just as dangerous. Your eyes can gaze at objects in the driving scene but fail to see them because your attention is distracted elsewhere.
Activities that can distract your attention include: talking to passengers; adjusting the radio, CD player or climate controls; eating, drinking or smoking; reading maps or other literature; picking up something that fell; reading billboards and other road advertisements; watching other people and vehicles including aggressive drivers; talking on a cell phone or CB radio; using telematic devices (such as navigation systems, pagers, etc.); daydreaming or being occupied with other mental distractions.
Don’t Drive Distracted
If drivers react a half-second slower because of distractions, crashes double. Some tips to follow so you won’t become distracted:
Use In-vehicle Communication Equipment Cautiously
Watch Out for Other Distracted Drivers
You need to be able to recognize other drivers who are engaged in any form of driving distraction. Not recognizing other distracted drivers can prevent you from perceiving or reacting correctly in time to prevent a crash. Watch for:
Give a distracted driver plenty of room and maintain your safe following distance.
Be very careful when passing a driver who seems to be distracted. The other driver may not be aware of your presence, and they may drift in front of you.
Regulations in red are new this year.
Purple text indicates an important note.