California is among the states with the highest recorded truck accidents in the past 10 years.
Aside from speeding and driving under the influence of drugs (prescription or not), one of its main causes involve distraction. Distracted driving is in fact, broader than most people think. It’s more than simply playing with your phone or talking to passengers.
Learn how to avoid truck accidents today by becoming familiar with distracted driving and its dangers.
Types of Distracted Driving
Texting while driving may be a popular example of distraction – but it’s not the only one. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles or DMV, there are three types of distracted driving:
- Visual – activities that keep your eyes away from the road
- Manual – tasks that take your hands off of the steering wheel
- Cognitive – disruptions that take your concentration off while driving
Let’s take a look at each.
Visual distractions include looking for stuff inside the vehicle, checking or adjusting the GPS, and taking in the surrounding views.
Manual distractions on the other hand, consist of smoking, eating and/or drinking, adjusting your passenger’s seatbelt. Even if you’re not engaging in these tasks, if your mind isn’t alert, you’re still driving distracted.
Cognitive distractions include daydreaming, road rage, driving under the influence (illegal substances and/or prescription medication), and talking to passengers.
Some tasks can fall under two or more categories. Texting for instance, is particularly dangerous because it falls under all THREE types. When you text, you look at phone’s screen (visual), type a message (manual), and your mind is now focused on the conversation – NOT on the road (cognitive). Other activities that could fall under different kinds of driving distractions include applying makeup and changing the radio (visual and manual).
Preventing Truck Accidents Today
All drivers are susceptible to distractions, especially if you’re pressured by tight schedules and strict working conditions.
Truck drivers for example, have been known to cause truck accidents due to fatigue. When you’re exhausted, your mind can wander elsewhere. Soon, your eyes start to droop heavily. Before you know it, your hands are slipping off the wheel. These instances, particularly at night, are all too common.
Drug use is another cause for recent truck accidents. Whether the drugs are illegal or prescribed by a physician, driving while under their influence can have serious consequences. Depending on the drug taken, it can:
- Cause initial alertness, later leading to confusion and disoriented behavior
- Poor muscle control and/or increased blood pressure
- Hallucinations, altered mental state, impaired perception of space and time
These are just some its effects. When driving, your best bet is to CONCENTRATE. This goes for both truck drivers and other motorists.
Observe proper road etiquette when sharing the road with big rigs. Avoid tailgating, keep off of their blind spots, and maintain a distance of at least two cars apart. This should help you mitigate any damages should the truck lose control.
But if you or a loved one has suffered from a truck accident today, contact a trusted truck accident lawyer immediately. Make sure he or she specializes in such cases so that your concern can be handled effectively.
Act quickly and don’t delay! Truck accidents today are complex. The earlier your case is handled, the sooner you’ll know of the next logical steps to take.