One in five crashes on Texas roadways occurred due to distracted drivers in 2021. For this reason, you may experience significant distress when you spot such a motorist. Try to remain calm and keep these considerations in mind.
Distracted driving definition
Distracted driving refers to any instance in which the driver diverts their attention from the road. Common examples may include:
- Talking on the phone or to passengers
- Applying make-up
- Drinking or eating
- Adjusting the vehicle’s navigation or radio
Recognizing distracted drivers
One of the best preventative tools against motor vehicle accidents involves being able to recognize distracted motorists. Typically, you may identify potential ones by these behaviors:
- Failure to brake
- Slower speeds
- Stop sign lingering
- Failure to stop at lights or signs
- Lane drifting
- Multiple teens or children in the vehicle
- Pets in the vehicle
- Obviously on the phone
After spotting the distracted driver, take additional steps to prevent collisions. These steps may protect you and your passengers:
- Provide a wide berth for the distracted driver.
- Slow down and allow the driver to drive ahead.
- If you have difficulty evading the driver, call 911.
- Operate with the assumption that the driver does not see you.
Preventing distracted driving
While you may not control other drivers’ behaviors, you can always take steps to keep your own driving safe. Follow these tips to prevent yourself from becoming a distracted driver:
- Adjust your seats before starting your vehicle.
- Make sure your radio and mirrors are on the right station before driving.
- Avoid driving while tired.
- Pull over if you need to respond to texts or calls.
No matter how safe you or other drivers try to remain, no driver’s eyes remain on the road 100% of the time. Stay aware of your surroundings and other drivers’ behavior, and call for emergency services immediately if an accident occurs.