How to Avoid Distracted Driving

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 48,368
    Dr. Bill Van Tassel, manager of AAA Driver Training, shows us afew tips on staying focused and safe behind the wheel.

    Dr. Bill Van Tassel: Hello! I am Dr. Bill Van Tassel, Manager of Driver Training Programs for AAA. One of the greatest threats to traffic safety that has become particularly acute in the last decade is the problem of distracted driving.

    Driver distraction has been with us as long as we've had cars. Decades ago, windshield wipers and radios cause great alarm among some safety advocates who worried about those distracting capabilities.

    Distractions can be dangerous and yet can be difficult to avoid. It's clear that being distracted or not giving your full attention to your driving can result in serious consequences. Your perception, decision making, and ability to respond quickly can all be dangerously weaken without you even realizing.

    Some times, it may seem that distractions cannot be avoided, or there is too much of a burden to keep oneself out of distracting situations. This is not the case, distraction can be avoided and AAA is going to show you how.

    Over this series of videos, Justin McNaull of AAA Public Affairs and I will examine common sources of driver distraction. These include cellphones, text messaging, audio systems, and other electronics as well as activities such as eating and grooving. We'll then provide several strategies to keep your hands on the wheel, and your eyes and mind on the road.

    Remember, when you are behind the wheel, you are in-charge, don't let distracting devices, objects or tasks threaten your control of the vehicle and the well being of you and your passengers. It's just not worth a risk.

    You can also proactively explore ways to keep current on the art and science of driving. Attend an up-to-date defensive driving course, such as AAAs Driver Improvement Program. If you want more information about distracted driving, visit your local department of motor vehicles or the AAA club in your area.

    As a leading traffic safety advocate, AAA is at the forefront; ongoing efforts to put in place appropriate laws addressing driver distraction. AAA is also working to enrich laws pertaining to team drivers, senior drivers, child passenger safety, and the host of imminent traffic safety issues.

    AAA also maintains outreach and education efforts to empower drivers to make the right decisions on the road and participate in our shared responsibility to keep our highway safe. So let's get started. Next, we'll talk more specifically about how distractions affect your driving.