Although many Ohio motorists strive to be as alert as possible while behind the wheel, others aren’t quite as safe. Distracted driving is one of the biggest problems throughout the country, causing devastating accidents and leaving victims injured or killed. These are some ways to determine whether a driver is distracted.
Abruptly changing speeds or unnecessarily stopping
If a driver suddenly changes their speed or stops for no apparent reason, there’s a good chance they’re distracted. All drivers are required to travel at the appropriate speed limit and slow down or stop to accommodate traffic conditions or pedestrians or animals crossing the roads. These things happening for no such reason indicate a distracted driver.
Driver looking down
Distracted driving motor vehicle accidents are very common when drivers are looking down or away from the road. This indicates a driver is looking at a smartphone, hand-held GPS or some other device instead of paying attention to the road. You may also notice a driver using a phone up to their ear for a call instead of in a hands-free manner. If possible, avoid their vehicle and maintain a safe distance away.
Chewing, eating or drinking
Many drivers catch a snack or a sip of a drink here and there on the road. Although doing that is often harmless, it can still lead to distraction. Even worse, some drivers consume entire meals while behind the wheel, which can increase the risk of a car accident.
A filled vehicle
Distracted driving accidents are more likely to happen when a vehicle is full. This is especially the case if the driver is in their teens to early 20s and their passengers are in the same age range. Engaging in conversation with others in the car can lead to distraction. Sometimes, a driver becomes distracted when turning their head to check on passengers in the backseat such as a parent checking on their children.
Being aware of your surroundings while driving may help prevent accidents. If you spot a distracted driver, defensive driving could protect you.