Distracted driving, which the NHTSA describes as “…any activity that diverts attention from driving” is a dangerous and growing problem for drivers, passengers, and pedestrians alike.
In 2019, 3,142 people were killed by distracted driving specifically, with the greatest cause of distracted driving being text or talking on the phone. The National Safety Council estimates that 26% of crashes involve cell phone use.
Cell phones aren’t the only distractions drivers face on the road. There are, in fact, three types of distracted driving.
- Visual – taking your eyes off the road
- Manual – taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive – taking your mind off driving
From looking over to change the radio station to reaching to grab a snack from your bag to daydreaming about the day ahead, distractions (even if they last a fraction of a second) can have deadly consequences.
Consequences and Prevention
With over 42,000 people killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2020 alone and a 16% increase in the first six months of 2021, understanding the role distracted driving plays in affecting our safety is critical. Teens are especially at risk of the consequences of distracted driving as they are 6 times more likely to crash while driving when attempting to dial a phone number. If they are texting, that jumps to 23 times as likely crash.
Whether a driver is new or not, pedestrians run the risk of falling victim to the consequences of distracted driving as well. Fortunately, there are ways to keep drivers, passengers, and pedestrians safe through preventative measures and leading advancements in automated and autonomous automotive safety by companies like Innoviz.
Learn more about the causes, consequences, and specific ways to prevent distracted driving.