Distracted driving is one of the biggest causes of car crashes and accidents, and it is nearly always avoidable. Driving distractedly is a conscious choice made on the part of the driver when they choose to partake in whatever it is that is distracting them. In the modern day, the biggest cause of distracted driving is a cell phone, but it is not the only thing. Distracted driving is anything that causes you to take your eyes and mind off the road or your hands off the wheel.
Not only is driving while using your cell phone incredibly dangerous, but it is also illegal in the state of California.
Using a cell phone or similar electronic device is only allowed while using it in a hands-free method. This means you are allowed to use speaker phone and voice commands or have your phone connected to the car via Bluetooth. It is important though that you never hold the phone directly in your hand while driving. It is also important to note that any driver under the age of 18 is prohibited from using their cell phone for any reason whilst driving.
Did you know that talking or texting while driving increases your risk of an accident by three times?
There have been countless campaigns launched in California to help fight against people driving while using their phones. The latest campaign is launched by the California Office of Traffic Safety, and it is called “Put Your Phone Down. Just Drive.” It follows a campaign launched back in 2015 called “Silence the Distraction.” Both campaigns have been focused on reaching younger audiences who grew up in a very tech-heavy society, growing up alongside cell phones for most of their life. The target audience for both ranges from 16 to 24 years old.
Typically, the youngest, newest drivers are most susceptible to cell phone use and distracted driving.
While cell phones are the leading cause of distracted driving among most drivers, they are not the only cause. Driving while eating, grooming oneself (doing hair, makeup, etc.), reading, reaching for items elsewhere in the car, and even just talking to a passenger can be considered distracted driving. Some argue that listening to music is even a form of distracted driving, as it pulls the driver’s attention from the road. Either way, it is always important to limit/stop participating in activities that distract you as a driver.