What are the 3 types of driving distractions?

On Behalf of | Aug 21, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

If you look for specific examples of distracted driving, they are nearly endless. Texting and driving. Making phone calls. Talking to passengers. Daydreaming. Listening to music. These are all examples of distracted driving, and they all have the potential to cause serious accidents.

When it comes to classifying such hazards, there are three different types of distracted driving that people engage in. They are visual distractions, manual distractions and cognitive distractions.

Examples within each category

The differences between the categories simply involve how a person is disengaging from the act of driving their vehicle. For instance, if they let go of the steering wheel, it’s a manual distraction. This often happens when someone reaches to pick up something that they dropped or when they interact with a passenger. A visual distraction is when someone looks away from the road, such as when they look down at their phone or at the screen for a GPS. A cognitive distraction, on the other hand, is a purely mental distraction that can happen despite the driver continuing to look at the road and hold the steering wheel.

What makes these similar is that they all pull a person’s attention away from driving, and they can all happen at the same time. Consider a person who is sending a text message while they drive. They think about what they want to write or what they are reading, which is a cognitive distraction. They look down at their phone screen, which is a visual distraction. They also likely hold the phone in one hand – if not using both hands to type – which is a manual distraction.

This confluence of all three types of distraction is incredibly dangerous. An accident is more likely with any single distraction, but it is much more likely when three are happening at once. It’s important to know what distractions look like so they can be avoided.

Unfortunately, people do suffer injuries and accidents caused by other negligent drivers even if they are being safe. Those who have need to know how to seek financial compensation by seeking legal guidance in the wake of sustaining harm.