Driving requires your full attention, and distractions are one of the biggest causes for accidents. Distracted driving accounts for roughly 1 of 4 fatal accidents and is illegal in Canada. However, more than 75% of Canadian drivers admit to distracted driving.
There are distractions that are not necessarily illegal, but still dangerous as the driver’s attention is taken from the road. The following are distracted driving behaviours that should be avoided.
- Adjusting Playlists or Radio
- Eating and Drinking
- Looking at Passengers
- Talking on the Phone
- Reaching for Something in the Backseat
- Adjusting GPS
- Applying Makeup or Fixing Hair
These behaviours can increase your chances of getting into an accident but are not illegal. There are two forms of distracted driving that are punishable by law:
- Handheld Communication Such as Cell Phones
- Texting, Dialing, and Emailing
You can be pulled over for even having a phone in your hand, so your best bet is to put your phone away for the entirety of the drive.
As a driver, you can legally use hands free devices to call or text, and you can view display screens of your GPS.
Before hitting the road, look at your route and pre-set your GPS to avoid the need to fiddle with the screen. Have a playlist set up so you don’t feel the need to change songs and turn your phone on “do not disturb”. This takes away the curiosity after a notification and decreases your incentive to pick up your phone.
Distracted driving is anything that takes your eyes and focus off the road. Regardless of whether it is a legal behaviour while driving, avoid anything that may put you, your passengers, and other road users at risk.
CLG Injury Law has over 35 years’ experience representing Atlantic Canadians who have suffered injuries following a motor vehicle accident. For more articles and safety tips, go to https://cantiniinjurylaw.ca/blog/ or subscribe to our newsletter.