An In Depth Look at Distracted Driving

Nowadays, people are constantly on the go.  Therefore, multitasking has become an integral part of an individual’s day-to-day life.   You can see examples of this behavior everywhere, even in the way people drive their automobiles.   This is why distracted driving is the most common reason someone hires an auto accident lawyer. Across the United States, drivers constantly can be seen playing with their cell phones, or looking down to change the radio station rather than focusing on safely navigating the road ahead.   Sometimes, they might even be combing their hair, putting on makeup, or staring at themselves in a mirror.   All of these activities make up what is known as “distracted driving.” According to, distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving.  There is one word that we do not like in that definition: could. To us, even the smallest form of distracted driving diverts a person’s attention away from driving.  No matter if they somehow keep their eyes on the road while multitasking, they are not 100-percent engaged in safe driving practices. To be fair, distracted driving is not a recent phenomenon.  However, it is such a hot button issue right now because state legislatures across the country are trying to determine appropriate measures to curtail texting while driving.    Furthermore, we know a lot more about the dangers of distracted driving now than we did even a decade ago.  For example, research has proven there are three distinct types of distracted driving: visual, manual, and cognitive. “Visual” distracted driving can simply be defined as any task that takes your eyes off the road. Looking down at your radio would qualify.  If you actually take your hands off the steering wheel to play with the radio, you have moved into the “manual” classification of distracted driving. Any task that forces the driver to remove his or her hands from the steering wheel falls into this category.  However, both of these tasks fall into the third-and-final classification of distracted driving: “cognitive” distracted driving.   “Cognitive” distracted driving is defined as any activity that takes a driver’s mind off what they are doing.   Quite frankly, any visual or manual form of distracted driving also belongs in this category.  Taking your eyes off the road or removing your hands from the steering wheel demonstrate you are not entirely focused on driving.