The Three Types of Distracted Driving

The Three Types of Distracted Driving

When we think of distracted driving, we tend to focus on specific tasks like texting or adjusting the radio. The reality is a little more complex. These days, most organizations identify three types of distracted driving, elements that increase the risk of a crash. While they’re all dangerous in their own way, one of these distractions stands high above the rest in its power to draw your focus away from the road.

3 Types Of Distracted Driving

The three types of distracted driving are:

  • Manual Distracted Driving: Anything that takes your hands away from the control of your vehicle
  • Visual Distracted Driving: Anything that takes your vision away from the road or your mirrors
  • Cognitive Distracted Driving: Anything that takes your mental focus anyway from driving

Manual Distracted Driving

Manual distractions refer to anything that takes your hands off the steering wheel or the gearshift. Whether you’re adjusting the air or reaching for your coffee, you’re engaging in a manual distraction.

The good news is that manual distractions are considered lower risk than the other two types. So long as your eyes and mind are focused on the road, the biggest risk of a manual distraction is a decreased reaction time.

Visual Distracted Driving

Visual distractions take your eyes off the road and your mirrors. Looking at your GPS and making eye contact with a passenger are just two, seemingly innocent, visual distractions.

These distractions are more dangerous because they hamper your ability to identify and prevent hazards. The more your eyes are on the road, the better equipped you are to recognize and prevent an accident before it happens.

Cognitive Distracted Driving

Cognitive distractions are more difficult to define, but they refer to anything that takes your mental focus away from driving. The problem is that almost anything can be a cognitive distraction. We tend to focus on daydreaming and thinking about other tasks, but a cognitive distraction can also be thinking of a response to a conversation or singing along to your favorite playlist.

This type of driving distraction is the most dangerous, by far. Most people don’t even realize they’re distracted until they slam the brakes seconds before a crash. For that reason, crashes involving cognitive distractions tend to be more severe. A driver impacted by a cognitive distraction usually doesn’t realize they’re speeding or that they’re about to hit another car until the moment before impact.

If you or someone you love suffered serious injuries in a car crash caused by a distracted driver, we can help. If you’d like an experienced attorney from Easley & Houseal, PLLC to evaluate your case, please send us an email or call (870) 330-0015.


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