Three Types of Driving Distractions 

Posted: September 13, 2022

man using cellphone while driving

A small distraction—one that takes a driver’s eyes, mind, or attention off the road even momentarily—is dangerous, not only for the distracted driver, but also for other motorists. That includes common distractions such as smartphones and, potentially, use of GPS systems.   

According to statistics, 3,142 people were killed by distracted driving in 2020, and in many cases it was someone other than the distracted driver who was killed. In fact, about one in five people who died in crashes involving a distracted driver in 2019 was not even in a vehicle but was killed while engaged in an activity such as walking or riding a bike.  

Below are the three main types of  distraction, according to the Center for Diseases Control and Prevention.  

1. Visual  

Many visually distracted drivers are preoccupied with technology. Texting while driving is a common visual distraction. Others can include: 

  • Changing radio stations 
  • Reading billboards 
  • Looking at motor vehicles on the roadside 

2. Manual 

Manual distraction is when a driver takes their hands off the wheel. This often happens when the driver is operating a mobile device, adjusting GPS or the radio, or reaching for something in the back seat. This can lead to a loss of control or swerving.  

Examples of manual distraction can include: 

  • Texting 
  • Eating 
  • Reaching for a drink 

3. Cognitive  

Anything that takes the mind off driving is a cognitive distraction.  This includes daydreaming and perhaps even talking on a cell phone. Emotions, too, can affect driving.  

Examples of potential cognitive distractions include: 

  • Chatting with passengers 
  • Experiencing road rage 
  • Focusing on a news report 
  • Drinking or being under the influence of alcohol 

It’s a driver’s responsibility to remain focused and drive carefully on the road. Those who don’t can be held accountable when they hurt someone on the road. If you have been injured in an accident involving a distracted driver, you may entitled to compensation for pain and suffering. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Call (844) 444-4444.

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