Many motorists recognize the dangers of certain activities while behind the wheel. Texting, for example, or reading email is almost universally condemned as a hazardous action while driving. Other activities, however, are so commonplace that the danger often goes unrecognized.
From the proliferation of drive-thru establishments to the focus on easy-to-reach cupholders, it seems like society has given drivers the go-ahead to dine while navigating a car through traffic. Whether it is breakfast on the way to a morning class, a snack between errands or dinner on the way home from work, drivers are never far away from a distraction.
- Eating while driving: From chips or cookies to a sandwich or burrito, drivers commonly grab a bite to eat to save time. Unfortunately, these actions take the eyes off the road, the hands off the steering wheel and the attention from the act of safely navigating traffic. Even worse, if the driver spills food, he or she will generally immediately react and either clean up the mess or minimize it with napkins. This can lead to dramatic swerving from lane to lane.
- Drinking while driving: What is likely more common than eating is taking a sip while behind the wheel. From a bottle of water or can of soda to a travel mug of coffee in the mornings, drivers feel empowered to partake in such a simple activity. Unfortunately, much like eating, drinking often represents a manual, cognitive and visual distraction.
Distracted drivers can cause terrible accidents along California roads and highways. Whether they fail to recognize stopped traffic, drive through an intersection or drift into oncoming lanes, these collisions can lead to broken bones, head trauma or spinal cord damage. Motorists must avoid even minor distractions while behind the wheel.