Distracted driving is more than just texting and driving

Distracted driving threatens the lives of drivers in Tennessee and others throughout the rest of the country on a daily basis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than a 1,000 people are injured and nine people are killed in distracted driving related collisions every day. However, distracted and driving is not limited to just texting or talking on a cellphone. The CDC defines distracted driving as any activity that takes a driver's full attention away from operating a vehicle.

The three types of distraction

There are three main types of driver distraction. According to the CDC, these include the following:

  • Cognitive-This occurs when a driver's mind is no longer focused on driving. For example, a driver who listens to the radio on the way home from work is cognitively distracted.
  • Visual-This type of distraction happens when the driver looks at something else besides the road in front of them. For instance, a driver who checks for directions on their GPS is visually distracted.
  • Manual-A driver becomes manually distracted when they take their hands off of the steering wheel. For example, a driver who searches for their cellphone on the seat next to them is manually distracted.

It is important for drivers to remember that any form of cognitive, visual or manual distraction elevates their chances of getting involved in or causing an injurious or fatal car accident.

Voice-activated technology still poses dangers to drivers

To combat the dangers of distracted driving, many vehicles now come equipped with voice-activated technology. However, according to Fox News, two recent studies found that these systems may only be contributing to the distracted driving problem.

In one of the studies, researchers examined the infotainment systems in some of the most common auto brands and ranked these systems on a scale of one to five with one being not distracting and five being the most cognitively distracting. Many of these systems received rankings above a three and in two simulations, participants crashed into vehicles in front of them using Apple's popular voice-activated system.

The systems that received the worst ratings on this study's distraction scale were the ones that made mistakes, even after the driver made clear and concise verbal commands. This caused the drivers to become extremely frustrated in a way that compromised their ability to drive safely.

After a distracted driving car accident, many drivers find that they are offered a settlement that does not reflect their best interests. If you were involved in an accident caused by a distracted driver, consult with an attorney who ensure you receive proper compensation for your injuries.