Drivers need to maintain the utmost of care when hitting the road, because even one mistake could potentially lead to a serious or even fatal accident. Most things that contribute to the rate of crashes are well known, such as intoxicated driving and distracted driving.
Texting while driving serves as a form of distraction. But just how does texting in specific impact a driver’s chances of getting into a crash?
Physical and visual distractions
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration takes a look at the correlation between texting and car crashes. Texting poses a unique risk due to the fact that it creates three types of distractions: visual, physical and mental.
Of course, when texting, a driver needs to look at the screen to see the messages and what they write. They also need to take their hands off the wheel in order to actually text. This removes a driver’s eyes from the road and reduces their ability to see and react to danger.
Do hands-free devices help?
Hands-free devices advertise themselves as a way to use electronic devices safely while driving by allowing the driver to speak and receive messages by audio, and give audio commands instead of touching the screen. However, this still does not address the third and final distraction: mental ones.
When focusing on a conversation, a driver cannot dedicate their full attention to the road. Unfortunately, no technology exists that can circumvent this distraction, which means there is no way to ever fully make texting while driving safe.
These reasons combine to make texting while driving one of the most dangerous choices a driver can make.