When most people think of distracted driving, phone use behind the wheel is the most frequently-cited example. However, distracted driving constitutes many other actions beyond just texting and driving.
All distracted driving behaviors can be classified as one or more different types of distractions: Physical distractions, visual distractions, and cognitive distractions. Distractions behind the wheel include any action that removes you, in some way, from being fully focused on the road and the task of driving.
A physical distraction (sometimes referred to as a manual distraction) is any action while driving a vehicle that causes the driver to take their hands off of the steering wheel. Digging for something in a bag, changing a radio station, and adjusting other controls are all examples of physical distractions.
A visual distraction, as the name implies, is a type of distracted driving in which the driver looks at something other than the road: Their phone, the radio, a map or GPS system, and passengers in the vehicle are just some examples of visual distractions while driving.
Cognitive distractions involve behavior that mentally distracts a person from the task of driving, meaning instead of focusing on the road, the driver is focused on another action. Strictly cognitive distractions may include day dreaming or speaking to other people in the car, although many physical and visual distractions mentally distract drivers as well.
Many examples of distracted driving can be categorized as a physical, visual, and cognitive distractions. Using a cell phone while driving is a prime example of this. Texting and driving and viewing notifications completely distracts drivers from what they are doing while in traffic, and can endanger everyone on the road. Talking to someone on the phone without a hands-free device could be considered less visually distracting, but drivers still have to look at their phone to make the call.
If a distracted or otherwise negligent driver caused an accident you were involved in, call the Law Offices of Dan Davis at (405) 531-9983 or use our contact form the schedule a free case evaluation.