When you send a text while driving, your eyes are off the road for an average of 5 seconds. If you are driving at 55mph, in 5 seconds you travel the length of a football field. Driving the speed limit on the freeway would take you even further. That is plenty of time to get in an accident, which means it is too much time to take your eyes off the road. Texting is considered the most dangerous form of distracted driving, because it requires the driver to look down at the screen, focus on what to say in the conversation, and then focus on typing that message. It therefore requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention from the driver.
Still, it is not the only type of distracted driving. As there are infinite tasks we can now accomplish on our phones, there are infinite ways to take our eyes off the road. A new law in California went into effect in January to combat that: banning all use of handheld devices behind the wheel.
Other Forms of Distracted Driving:
- Using GPS
- Making a call on your cell phone
- Eating and drinking
- Changing the music
- Talking to passengers