Data about leading driving distractions released

When someone is distracted while driving, he or she is paying less attention to the road, increasing his or her chance of a car accident. Nearly everyone in Flushing already knows this, but they may not know what all of those distractions are that are putting other drivers, motorists and pedestrians at risk. A new study has been released, however, that ranks the top 10 distractions.

The data was collected by police officers following car accidents across the country, which means that the data available may greatly underreport some of the distractions. With so few people willing to admit to their dangerous behaviors, it is possible that some of these distractions are even more prevalent than what the insurer that collected the data lists.

Surprisingly, using a cellphone is only the second-most-common distraction. Only 12 percent of all fatal accidents involving a distracted driver were caused by a driver who was busy on his or her cellphone. This data includes more than just texting and driving, however, it also includes those drivers who were dialing their phones, talking and listening.

The most-common distraction, however, coming in at 62 percent of all distracted drivers, is just general distraction. This is not actually a specific activity, but is anything that is preventing the driver from focusing on the road. It may also include daydreaming or some other kind of unspecified distraction.

Many of the other distractions are those that people in Queens would normally think of, such as other people, events outside the car, using some kind of device, adjusting settings and smoking, amongst other things.

Unfortunately, New York City drivers allow themselves to become distracted, putting many people’s lives at risk.

Source: Insurance Journal, “Insurer Analyzes Top 10 Driving Distractions Involved in Fatal Car Crashes,” April 4, 2013

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