According to the Environmental Health & Safety (EHS) Administration, the top five driving distractions are daydreaming, cellphone use, rubbernecking, making adjustments, or eating and drinking. In this article, we will take a look at some of the problems these distractions can cause, and discuss methods to overcome these driving distractions and hopefully drive safer.
What is driving distracted? According to the Senior VP at Erie Insurance, “Distracted driving is any activity that takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the wheel, or your mind off your primary task of driving safely.” Although many would think that cellphone use is likely the leading distractor, it’s not even close. Sixty-two percent of accidents are caused by daydreaming compared to only twelve percent for cellphone use.
#1 Driving Distraction – Daydreaming
This is the number one reason for missed signs and control devices. Many believe if they are honest and tell the judge they were daydreaming, the judge will honor their honesty and give them a break. What usually happens is after they admit their guilt, the judge tells them to pay the fine, take the Traffic Violators School (TVS), and next time consider hiring an attorney who will advise you of your rights.
#2 Driving Distraction – Cellphone Use
CA Vehicle Code 23123.5, Driving Offenses makes it a violation even to pick up or hold a cellphone while driving. Unless your phone is part of a built-in communication system or dashboard-mounted capable of working with a single finger swipe, its use is illegal. This prohibition includes when you are stuck in traffic or sitting at a red light, except to call emergency responders.
#3 Driving Distraction – Rubbernecking
We’re all likely guilty of turning to see what happened when we see emergency vehicles and flashing light on the side of the road, but this is driving distracted and could cause an accident. Pay attention to the road and Google it when you get home.
#4 Driving Distraction – Adjusting the Radio, GPS, Seat, Etc.
It’s difficult to get comfortable on those long drives across California, especially after being stuck in traffic for hours trying to get out of LA, Bakersfield, or SF. We wiggle and squirm trying to find a comfortable position, and constantly have to adjust the radio because those small town stations only last a few minutes. Once again, it’s all distracted driving and dangerous to you, your passengers, and other drivers.
#5 Driving Distraction – Eating or Drinking
Eating or drinking is as big a driving distractor as using a cellphone while driving. It seldom gets enforced unless it is the direct cause of an accident. Therefore, if the law enforcement officer determines you were more than 0% responsible for the accident, the DMV will assess one Negligent Operator Treatment System (NOTS) point, and your auto insurance premium will go up.
Since the report shows you as partially responsible, attendance at TVS will not help because your insurance company already knows. Your only possible recourse is to consult a traffic ticket attorney about an independent investigation of the accident and its events.
Consult a Traffic Attorney About a Ticket in Delano, CA
When you have a ticket for distracted driving or get accused of causing an accident, call Bigger & Harman (661) 349-9300. Se habla Español (661) 349-9755. If you do not challenge the report of responsibility for an accident, it could cost you $1500 or more in increased auto insurance.
We are traffic law professionals; we do not practice other types of law. We hope the drivers of CA benefit from our commitment to become the most knowledgeable and proficient at just one area of law. We can’t always get a dismissal or save you money on increased auto insurance through a reduced no-point conviction, but we never quit. Give us a call to find out what we can do for you.
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CA Vehicle Code 23123.5, Driving Offenses
The EHSafetyNews.com article, Top 10 List of Deadliest Driving Distractions