Distracted driving is a real problem on the highways throughout the United States, including in the rural state of Iowa. It is not just an issue on the open road; in town, drivers often think that because they are driving at reduced speeds, attempting to multi-task while behind the wheel is acceptable. What tends to happen with this thinking is an increase in motor vehicle accidents. It’s important to note that distracted driving practices go well beyond the typical cellphone usage problems that have caught so much scrutiny in the past decade.
Digital device distraction
One of the first examples of distracted driving in the modern world is using digital devices while in transit. Even though most states like Iowa have initiated laws against texting while driving, hands-free technology in vehicles has not been as effective in reducing motor vehicle accidents as was hoped. Even answering a phone call can cause a driver to take their eyes off the road for a few seconds, which is all that is required to cause a crash.
Eating and drinking while driving
Another problem that has been around for years is eating while driving. While drinking coffee may not seem dangerous on first glance, if it is hot and gets spilled, it can assuredly result in the driver causing a motor vehicle accident. Soft drinks tend to be problematic when they have a top to remove because they take a driver’s hands off the wheel. Eating can be a worse situation because it may take two hands to handle a sandwich, and it takes the driver’s focus off the road.
Other issues such as loud music or conversations in the vehicle can cause distractions for Iowa drivers even out in the rural areas. Running off the road can happen quickly. It is important for all drivers in the state to keep both hands on the wheel while driving and avoid distractions.