April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Don’t let your last text be your last words.

Distracted driving can be caused by many different distractions while you are behind the wheel. Common driving distractions include mobile phones, radios, televisions, eating, and dangerous activities such as applying makeup or trying to remove your jacket. People who use cell phones while driving are 34% more likely to have a collision. If your music is so loud that you cannot hear horns or sirens of other vehicles, you may have a collision that you otherwise could have avoided. It could be taking your eyes off the road to glance at a text message, or taking your hands off the wheel to shove some food in your mouth. When an emergency arises, your reaction time is slowed when one hand is on the wheel and the other on a sandwich. We get it – life gets busy, but inattentive driving could cost you that busy life. 3,450 people lost their lives due to distracted driving in 2016 alone. Drivers paying attention to the road reduce their own risk of involvement in collisions. Find your local Farmers Union Insurance Agent here.

Attentive Driving Tips

  • Assess traffic conditions. Project your vision far ahead to see what the traffic is doing well in advance of your current position. This gives you more time to assess and ultimately react smoothly to changing traffic patterns and conditions.
  • Reduce speed and increase vigilance during inclement weather such as snow, rain, and sleet, and during dark periods. Be alert before, during, and after dawn and dusk since visibility can be hampered.
  • Use good sunglasses during daylight hours to reduce glare where appropriate and available.
  • Maintain adequate following distance based on the equipment or car you are driving. The higher the speed, the more you should increase the following distance. Also, inclement weather requires more following distance than good weather.
  • Avoid driving when upset, arguing, or conversations requiring deep thought.
  • Maintain proper lane and lane usage. Slower traffic in the right lane is appropriate for multilane highways. Check mirrors and be aware of surroundings before any lane change maneuver. Use signaling before changing lanes.
  • Do not read or take notes. The same rules apply for dictation and recording equipment.
  • Any activity that will diminish your attention to the road should be done while your vehicle is stopped.

Thanks to our company partner, Secura, for contributing to the content of this blog.  Find more helpful safety tips on Secura’s Blog.