If you were to claim that most people already know that driving while distracted is incredibly dangerous, you’ll be right. Polls and surveys make it clear that the average driver is well aware of the risks associated with distracted driving.
Unfortunately, despite knowing the potential risks, many people seem to think they, alone, have the ability to safely text while driving. In other words, while people believe that texting at the wheel is a bad decision, that judgment only applies when other people engage in the activity.
Knowing about this internal bias can help you make better decisions while driving. It can also help you broach a difficult topic with young drivers in your life to help them stay safe.
People seem to think that they can safely text or email while driving
Although the study referenced in this case is relatively small, the results are still eye-opening. Researchers in King County, Washington, surveyed roughly 900 drivers regarding the practice of texting at the wheel. Roughly 70 percent answered that they find the practice dangerous and threatening when other drivers engage in it.
However, an even higher percentage, about 75 percent, indicated that they don’t think they will personally crash their car if they text or email while driving. Can you see the major gap in logic here?
It’s important that you realize that no matter how confident you feel at the wheel, you are still taking your eyes and your hands off the road. Even if you’re using a talk-to-text program, you will still have to press buttons and visually review the text to ensure its accuracy before sending it.
In other words, there simply is no safe way to text or email while in control of a moving vehicle. If you absolutely must send an email or text, you should pull off to the side of the road or into a parking lot until you have finished sending the message. Even sending messages while you stop at an intersection could be dangerous, largely because your mind will take some time to refocus on the task at hand.
Distracted drivers put everyone on the road in danger
No matter how compelling the reason that someone gives for texting or emailing at the wheel, there simply is no message that’s more important than safety. Our culture of constant contact has to learn that there needs to be exceptions for people actively traveling.
You need to prioritize your own safety and make sure that everyone else in your family follows suit. However, your best efforts still can’t control the actions of other drivers. Anyone who winds up injured in an accident that they believe relates to distraction should take steps to discuss their situation with an attorney who understands personal injury law in Texas.