Distracted by Your Smart Phone? Tips to Avoid Distracted Driving
No one wants to be involved in a distracted driving accident, but far too many people on the road still incorporate distractions into their driving habits. According to nationwide data, there were over 34,000 fatal accidents in 2017 alone. And nine percent of those were due to distracted drivers. Hundreds of pedestrians and bicyclists are also killed annually by drivers who just can’t seem to keep their attention on the road. Smartphone usage is still a primary cause of distracted driving. And while you can’t control what another driver does on the road, you can help avoid a distracted driving accident on your end by implementing the following tips.
Turn Off Your Phone
The simplest and most effective solution to avoiding a smartphone-related distracted driving accident is to just turn off your phone whenever possible. Any type of phone usage while driving drastically increases the risks of a fatal car accident, especially if you’re a new or inexperienced driver. So shut it off and save lives.
Turn Off All Notifications Or Download an App
Many people can’t remember to turn off their phones in the car or need certain elements to remain on during the trip. Texting while driving is still against the law and can cost you a lot more than that message is worth. If you need your phone on, at least turn off notifications to avoid unnecessary distractions. And if that’s too much to remember, download one of many free or paid apps to do it for you.
Keep Your Phone Mounted or In the Center Console and Set on Bluetooth Only If Needed
No state has a complete cell phone ban for drivers, but Michigan does ban texting and driving. Moreover, legislation has been proposed to incorporate a statewide hands-free law that could have some serious legal ramifications if broken. So if you do need to keep notifications on for emergencies or work purposes, keep it mounted on the dashboard or tucked away out of sight, and at least use a Bluetooth headset. That way your eyes can stay on the road and your hands can stay on the wheel.
Choose the Perfect Playlist Prior to Leaving
Texting and driving aren’t the only distraction inside the car. Just reaching for objects or fiddling with the radio can be enough to swerve and end up bumper-to-bumper with an unsuspecting traveler. If you know you’re going to want tunes on your trip, preplan the playlist before leaving. Then just hook your phone up to the car stereo or press the play button on your music app before putting the car in drive. One less thing to worry about.
Preset Your GPS and Know Your Route
One of the worst things while on the road is losing track of your bearings or having to suddenly reroute your GPS because the planned route had an unexpected detour. If someone else is in the car, you can easily give them the job of handling that for you. But if you’re on your own, the extra fidgeting with your phone can take your eyes, hands, and focus off of the task at hand: driving. Avoid the risk of having a distracted driving accident by double-checking your route and programming your GPS before heading out. And if you still need a Michigan car accident attorney, we’re just a call away.