The introduction of cell phones has triggered changes in the public thinking, with respect to distracted driving. Large numbers of drivers feel that once any one driver can keep his or her eyes on the road, that same driver has been freed from the dangers associated with distracted driving. Because drivers can now by a device that guarantees hands-free driving, even while using a cell phone, many of the same drivers feel that a driver with 2 free hands cannot suffer the consequences of distracted driving.
What are those consequences?
An extension of the driver’s reaction time. In other words, the driver does not react as rapidly, when in a hazardous situation. That lengthening of the driver’s reaction time arises out of the characteristic found in all drivers’ brains. When distracted, the brain gets only 50% of the messages sent by the eyes.
The personal injury lawyer in Chatham knows that the person sitting behind the steering wheel exhibits an impaired judgement. The driver’s brain sorts messages from the eyes more slowly. The rate at which that sorting takes place decreases, even while the brain gets only 50% of the messages from the eyes. Both driver and passengers must face the fact that they, along with pedestrians and other drivers are more likely to get injured.
3 types of distractions; 3 ways to invite the identified consequences:
Visual distractions: Those that cause a driver to take his or her eyes off of the road.
A manual distraction: One that pushes the driver to take his or her hands off of the steering wheel.
A mental distraction: Something that causes the person at the steering wheel to have his or her eyes focused on something other than the act of driving.
A misperception that confuses drivers:
The public has heard others claim the ability to multi-task. Psychologists claim that a human cannot really multi-task. The brain fails to register all of the information that gets sent to the brain’s circuits.
The fact that so many drivers have that misperception highlights the last of the 3 consequences of distracted driving. Those drivers with that misperception are like the drunk driver that claims possession of a marked ability to steer an automobile. The same driver feels motivated to take chances.
Gradually, distracted drivers acquire a false sense of confidence. Each of them thinks that possession of the non-existent ability to multi-task hands to them the right to feel free from potential threats. If someone seated behind the steering wheel feels highly confident for some reason, he or she might pay less attention to good driving habits. One of those habits concerns stopping for a red light. Would you want to be in a car that passes through a red light?