Preventing Parental Driving Distractions

Our parents set the first and best examples for our own behavior. Who among us cannot remember a time in childhood where we watched our mothers and fathers do something, only to reenact it ourselves later? As adults, it’s important to remember that our own children will do the same. While some parents may be focused on preventing distracted driving in their teen motorists, it’s equally as important to set a great example for our kids. Of course, there’s the added benefit of keeping our precious cargo a little safer, too.

Cell phones have grabbed a majority of distracted driving headlines in the last few years, but there are actually three categories of distractions behind the wheel. Cognitive distractions cause you to take your mind off of driving. That baby crying in the backseat? Classic cognitive distraction. Kids arguing over a toy on a road trip? Also a cognitive distraction.

Visual distractions can also cause drivers to take their eyes and minds off the road. These are literal distractions, like looking at a GPS or an incoming text message. For parents, looking to the backseat to calm the crying baby or to break up the kids’ arguments can also prove to be visually distracting.

Manual distractions are the third and final way drivers lose focus. These distractions require a person to take their hands off the wheel. Reaching to that backseat to adjust a car seat or pick up a dropped toy both count as manual distractions.

While it may be impossible to completely eliminate such distractions, there are a few ways to combat them. When possible, have a copilot in the car to help manage the kids. When that’s not possible, set up your backseat to have as many failsafes as possible to soothe upset kids. Keep toys within their reach and have plenty of snacks for them to munch on when bored. When all else fails, pull over your car, park and get out to solve problems as safely as possible. While it might mean a five minute delay in your journey, it means protecting your family and keeping them safe from distracted driving.

Injured by a Reckless Driver?

If you were injured because of someone else’s negligence, you undoubtedly have many questions about your legal rights. Our Virginia personal injury lawyers can answer your questions and teach you how the legal system can help you. The Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC has helped accident victims for over 29 years. If you’d like a free consultation, give us a call or send us an email 877.544.5323.

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