The Most Common Causes of Distracted Driving — And What to Do About Them

Distracted driving feels a bit like the status quo these days. We all technically agree that it’s important to pay attention to the road, but all too often succumb to the lure of checking our phone, applying makeup, or grabbing a snack. All three behaviors are dangerous, as we explain below: Cell Phones Mobile devices are among the most common sources of distraction behind the wheel. Texting is an obvious culprit, but using navigation apps or even chatting on the phone can be problematic. Increasingly, many drivers also use social media while operating vehicles, with some even adding to Instagram…

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April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month: What the Latest Research Says About Distraction And Our Abilities Behind the Wheel

In the chaos of everyday life, it’s easy to succumb to bad habits. Few, however, are as dangerous or as potentially tragic as driving while distracted. Hence, the importance of recognizing Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Held in April, this important occasion draws attention to the ongoing problem of distraction on our roads — and the tragedies this concern prompts. We’ve highlighted a few of the latest statistics to provide additional insight into the role of distraction: Distraction Is Common We all know that distracted driving is dangerous, but that doesn’t always stop us from engaging in problematic behaviors. Alarming, data…

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Zoom Zombies? Why Cognitive Overload Makes Roads More Dangeorous

At the beginning of the pandemic, many people assumed that the increase in work-from-home arrangements would limit car accidents. This theory makes sense: fewer people on the road means fewer crashes, right? In reality, however, auto fatalities are on the rise. This could be prompted, in part, by the cognitive overload that accompanies both remote work and general life during a pandemic. Such concerns leave us unable to maintain our attention behind the wheel, thereby reducing our ability to respond effectively to hazards on today’s increasingly dangerous roads. Overburdened By Work Demands A variety of factors are likely contributing to…

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Staying Safe During Daylight Saving Time

This Sunday marks the beginning of Daylight Saving Time. While we certainly want to “spring forward” and update our clocks, statistics tell us we should pay special attention while on the road. Last January, the University of Colorado at Boulder released a study of the tragic effect daylight savings has on drivers. Analyzing 732,000 accidents over two decades, the study found that the annual spring switch to daylight savings increases the rate of fatal car accidents by 6% during the week following the change. The findings are in line with more general research that suggests the one-hour loss due to…

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New Year, New Law: It Will Soon Be Illegal to Hold Your Phone While Driving in Virginia

If you are a believer in new years’ resolutions, you might consider adding one more item to your list: don’t hold your phone while driving. While this certainly has always been a good idea, it is even more so now that Virginia’s new law will soon make it illegal to hold any handheld personal communications device while driving. The law takes effect on January 1, 2021. Under the current law, it is illegal for drivers to read or send emails and text messages. Under the new law, just holding a personal communications device while driving anywhere at any time will…

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Crash Statistics: Drivers Involved in Crashes Admit Risky Behavior

  Distracted driving continues to be a major cause of accidents in America. While this unlikely comes as a surprise, what is surprising is how little improvement has been made. Recently, AAA released a report that analyzed data from drivers involved in at least one crash in the last two years. Here are some of their key findings: 50% of those involved in a recent crash admit to talking on a hand-held device while driving in the past month, compared to 42% not involved in a crash. 43% of those involved in a recent crash admit to texting while driving…

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The Dangers of Daylight Saving Time: How Can You Avoid Them?

  Daylight Saving Time isn’t a mere annoyance — it’s a verifiable source of danger. Every year, motor vehicle accidents and fatalities skyrocket right after we move the clocks forward or back. The human body simply can’t handle this sudden change. With a little preparation, however, it’s possible to plan ahead and avoid the worst of this dreaded date: Build Light Into Your Transportation Things are about to get a whole lot darker as we fall back. Spotting road hazards is tough enough when dealing with disrupted sleep, but the increased darkness certainly doesn’t help matters. A few simple steps…

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Driving Safety Tips After Taking a Break Due to Lockdown

  After a long break from school or work, you’re about to resume some semblance of normalcy, complete with a mask and social distancing. You’re also going to discover the greatest silver lining of quarantine: no commute. Now that you’re back on the road, you might be surprised by how rusty your driving skills have become. Keep these auto safety tips in mind as you once again get behind the wheel: Review Your Vehicle’s Maintenance If your car has been sitting in the garage for several months, you’ve likely acquired a case of ‘lot rot,’ in which a lack of…

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The Dangerous Drivers of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Anxious and Out-of-Touch Drivers — And the Dangers They Pose During the COVID Pandemic When COVID lockdowns first took over, many people assumed that a silver lining would involve reduced car accidents and fatalities. After all, it stands to reason that more people working or studying from home will translate to fewer cars on the road — and a reduced likelihood of collision. Unfortunately, these predictions haven’t played out as expected. If anything, some drivers view the comparatively empty roads as an opportunity to behave even more recklessly than they did prior to the pandemic. Others are simply too anxious…

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Highway Fatality Rates Increase Despite Less Drivers on the Road

  The National Safety Council has reported that, based on preliminary nationwide data from May, people traveling by roads had a higher risk of dying from a motor vehicle crash for the third month in a row. We previously wrote about this issue in May, and the trend of more dangerous driving has continued. The fatality rate is a measure of deaths due to collisions per 100 million vehicle miles. The fatality rate includes deaths of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc., and is a good indicator of dangerous driving. The number of miles driven in May 2020 decreased by 25.5%…

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