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The dangers of distracted driving

Michigan drivers have likely encountered distracted driving or even found themselves failing to pay attention to the road, even if it is unintentional. Although many motorists may associate technology with distracted driving, there several different ways that attention can be diverted from the road. It is important for drivers to know the risks so they can stay safe.

Drivers may think that because they are not texting, their attention is on the road. According to Distraction.gov, changing the radio station, checking a map, and even answering a passenger’s question are all distractions that can affect driving. This is because anything that diverts your attention is considered distracted driving.

Although drivers of all ages may drive distracted, the risk is particularly high for teenagers; they are involved in more fatal distracted driving collisions than any other age group. Overall, this type of accident killed 3,179 people in 2014. One of the most dangerous distractions is texting. Many drivers remove their eyes from the road for about five seconds, and texting and driving was reported by one-third of drivers in a 2015 survey.

To prevent cellphone distraction, it is recommended that drivers keep their phones out of sight and only check messages when they have arrived at their location. CBS says that it is also a good idea to put phones on silent and use apps that make it hard to text and drive. Drivers can also delegate answering phone calls and text messages to passengers. One representative from the American Automobile Association notes that pedestrians and bicyclists are often placed in danger when drivers do not pay attention.

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