5 Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents. Text messaging increases crash risks by 23 percent. Using your phone while driving is extremely dangerous. Distracted driving accounts for 20% of injury and property damage crashes in 2013, according to the National Security Council. Though teens are notorious for their cell phone use, adults are equally guilty of using their phones while driving.
Everyone knows that texting and driving is bad, even deadly. Despite the dangers, many of us are unable to keep ourselves from glancing at our phones when we’re in the car. We’ve compiled a list of ways to prevent yourself from using your phone while you’re behind the wheel.
- Turn your phone off when you’re in the car
This is the safest method. If your phone is off, you can’t use it. If you just can’t shut off your phone while you’re in the car, try turning it on silent. If you don’t hear the ring, you’ll be less likely to look at your phone.
- Don’t put your phone in reach
What if turning off the sound doesn’t work? With the constant temptation, it can be hard to resist the urge to check that text message. Putting your phone out of reach can prevent distracted driving. Sometimes, it may not be enough to just leave your phone in your bag. If that’s the case, put it further out of reach. Some people leave their phone in their trunk so that there is no possible way to reach it.
- Use hands-free
If you need to make a call in the car, many cars now have a hands-free Bluetooth feature. This allows you to use voice command or buttons on the steering wheel to control your phone and make that call?. This way, you still have accessibility to the features of your phone without physically having to look at and touch it. You can also use various headsets to make calls while driving.
- Apps on apps
There are a multitude of apps available that help prevent texting and driving. Apps such as Cellcontrol, Drive Safe Mode, and Live2Txt all block texting while driving. There are also apps like SafeDrive, Drivemode, and Drivesafe.ly encourage safe driving practices. Using apps are a great way to make sure that you aren’t distracted while driving.
- Beware of distractions from other sources
From eating, to putting on your makeup or even pets and children, there are distractions all around. If you need to divert your attention from the road, pull over and deal with the situation. It’s also a good idea to leave plenty of time to reach your destination. Avoid personal grooming or getting dressed while driving. Do those types of activities before or after you drive.
It’s always a good idea to establish safe driving habits from the start. Going to Driver’s ed or another educational program is a great way to learn good habits from a young age. Encharter has partnered with Arbella Insurance to put on Distractology, a course to teach young drivers about the risks of distracted driving:
From September 5th to September 8th Amherst-Pelham Regional High School will be hosting the Arbella Insurance Foundation’s newly relaunched Distractology program, which teaches new drivers about the dangers of distracted driving. Sessions are available for Amherst-Pelham Regional High School students from 7:50am to
3:50pm. Have your student driver visit Room 155 for more information.
Taking steps to avoid distracted driving is necessary to ensure your safety, the safety of your passengers, as well as everyone else on the road. Don’t let a silly text message be the cause of an accident. It’s not only dangerous, but it’s also illegal in many states. Also consider getting an auto insurance policy if you get into an accident. Unfortunately, you can control your actions in the car, but you cannot control others on the road. If someone else is texting and driving and ends up causing an accident involving you, then you’ll want to make sure that you have the proper auto insurance in place.