According to U.S. government statistics, in 2012, more than 420,000 people were injured in car crashes involving distracted driving and more than 3,300 people were killed. A 2015 Erie Insurance distracted driving survey reported that drivers do all sorts of dangerous things behind the wheel including brushing their teeth and changing clothes. The survey also found that one-third of drivers admitted to texting while driving, and three-quarters saying they’ve seen others do it. (ERIE INSURANCE)
Here are 10 tips for managing some of the most common distractions provided by the Governors Highway Safety Association:
- Turn it off and stow it. Turn your phone off or switch it to silent mode before you get in the car. Then stow it away so that it’s out of reach.
- Spread the word. Record a message on your phone that tells callers you’re driving and will get back to them when you’re off the road, or sign up for a service that offers this feature.
- Pull over. If you need to make a call, pull over to a safe area first.
- Use your passengers. Ask a passenger to make the call or respond to a text for you.
- X the Text. Don’t ever text and drive, surf the web or read your email while driving. It’s dangerous and against the law in most state. Even voice-to-text isn’t risk-free.3
- Know the law. Familiarize yourself with state and local laws before you get in the car. Some states and localities prohibit the use of hand-held cell phones in addition to texting.
- Prepare. If using a GPS device, enter your destination before you start to drive. If you prefer a map or written directions, review them in advance. If you need help while driving, ask a passenger to assist you or pull over to a safe location to change your GPS or review your map/directions.
- Secure your pets. Unsecured pets can be a big distraction in the car.
- Mind the kids. Pull over to a safe place to address situations involving children in the car.
- Focus on driving. Multi-tasking behind the wheel is dangerous.4 Refrain from eating, drinking, reading, grooming, smoking, and any other activity that takes your mind and eyes off the road.
Downloadable .pdf versions of these tips are available for printing here.
The folks at Freedom Insurance Agency care about you and your loved ones and want you to be safe while driving. Make sure your auto coverage is will protect you when you need it. Call for a free quote today.
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