Distraction 101

 

There are three main types of distraction that affect human capability whether you are talking with a friend, walking to class or driving down the street. A person's best focus comes into play when they are manually engaged (doing something with your hands or feet) visually engaged (looking at what you're doing) and cognitively engaged (focusing your mind). Think about it for a second can you play soccer well if you are not looking at what you're doing on the field? Can you use a saw in shop class safely if you don't have both hands engaged? Why do you think fans in the crowd holler when the opposing team goes up for a free-throw?

 

Distractions are everywhere, but one of the most dangerous places to be distracted is in the car. We can all think of examples of distracted driving. Things like eating, drinking, using a cellphone, talking to passengers, using a GPS, adjusting the radio or even day dreaming are all considered driving distractions. Since sending a text requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention from the driver, it is by far the most alarming distraction.

 

The Facts:

• Nearly 1 in 4 crashes involves a distracted driver. (National Safety Council)

• At any given daylight moment across America, approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or manipulating electronic devices while driving, a number that has held steady since 2010. (NOPUS)

• One study found that the odds of a crash or near-crash in newly licensed teen drivers was more than 8 times greater when dialing a cell phone. (SAFE KIDS)

• Five seconds is the average time your eyes are off the road while texting. When traveling at 55mph, that's enough time to cover the length of a football field blindfolded. (2009, VTTI) 

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