People are usually well aware that things like texting and driving are a form of distracted driving. They can cause thousands of car accidents. Some of the outrage over this, when accidents happen, is because other drivers know that the distracted person was doing something they didn’t actually need to be doing. This makes it reckless or negligent. They chose to drive dangerously.
But it’s important to remember that even useful systems within your car can be a source of distraction. It is not limited to texting and driving, nor is it limited to things that you don’t need to do.
How could this occur?
To see how this happens and why distraction is so common, here are a few examples:
- Changing the radio station
- Changing the volume
- Turning up the heat
- Turning up the AC
- Rolling a window up or down
- Adjusting the angle of the steering wheel
- Adjusting the seat
- Turning on the windshield wipers
- Adjusting the rearview mirror or the side mirrors
All of these systems can be very important and may even help to keep you safe, such as when turning on the defroster helps to defog the windows so that you have better visibility. But this is why it’s important to do these tasks before leaving the driveway. When someone gets in the car, they should automatically adjust everything before they even start to move. If they don’t, doing it on the go can certainly be a distraction.
Those who have been injured in accidents caused by distracted drivers need to know what legal options they have.