This post brought to you by Insurance Hunter. All opinions are 100% mine.
Do you remember the last time you were driving to work? Or home? Were you thinking about your dinner plans? Was there a great really song on the radio? Did your baby started to fuss from the backseat?
These are all common situations that we face in our day to day lives. When we think of distracted driving, we think of people talking on cell phones and weaving all over the highway. In the scenarios above, did you turn up the radio or turn around to soothe your baby? These are both examples of distracted driving.
According to Insurance Hunter, 75% of Canadians admit to driving while distracted. It happens to us all. For me, my biggest challenge while driving is getting too involved in a conversation with my passengers. It’s hard to concentrate on driving when I’m having a great chat with my friends but I know I have to prioritize and be aware of my surroundings. Doing anything else just means trouble.
Distracted driving is more than just cell phones, GPS’, radios, and the other usual culprits. Distractions can be divided into four categories: auditory; visual; cognitive, and manual. Ironically, people reading signs count for 85% of the ‘visual’ distracted driving out there – be careful the next time you spot an “Under Construction” sign!
Distracted driving laws have become much more prevalent since the first legislation introduced in Newfoundland back in 2003. Since then, every province in Canada has implemented some version of a distracted driving law with fines, for example, starting at $172 Alberta and in $155 in Ontario. Driver demerits for these fines range between 0 to 4 demerits per offence. This translates into higher insurance premiums. Check out Insurance Hunter to learn how to save money on your insurance premiums and other great tips on safety. Keep in mind that multi-tasking on the road will cost you though!
The true cost of distracted driving is a lot higher than what we think about in our everyday lives. It costs you much more than a couple of bucks if you’re ticketed or a few seconds of adrenaline-fuelled swerving to avoid something you didn’t see. Distracted drivers are 23 times more likely to crash than their concentrating counterparts. Even scarier, eight out of ten collisions are caused by drivers that were side-tracked by something else.
Forget the numbers; the important thing to remember is that one moment can cost you dearly. Personally, my step-father was involved in a distracted driving collision quite a few years ago. He needed double bypass heart surgery and a years’ worth of rehabilitation to recover. Thankfully, he did make a full recovery and he is now healthy and hale two decades later. Not everyone is so fortunate.
Check out the infographic below and read more at Stop Distracted Drivers to learn more. Be careful out there!