Study: Nearly 90 Percent of Parents Admit to Being Distracted Behind the Wheel

Distracted driving is not only a serious risk factor for a car accident but it could be a poor example for future drivers. A recent study found that nearly 90 percent of parents surveyed had admitted to engaging in some type of distracted behavior in the past month while behind the wheel.

The most common was talking on a cell phone. But parents are also using these devices to surf the web. Texting was the least common distraction, as only about 10 percent of the parents surveyed said this was a distraction in the last month.

Although there has been a spike in the use of cell phones and similar types of technology, parents also admitted to being distracted in other ways. For instance, assisting a child, such as by picking up a toy dropped on the floor.

Other distractions include: 

  • feeding a child;
  • self-grooming;
  • using a GPS; and
  • utilizing other features of the vehicle (radio, etc.).

The researchers also found that parents who inappropriately restrain their children – by incorrectly using a seat belt or car seat – were two and a half times more likely to be distracted by the child.

Distractive Behaviors That Could Be Contributing Factors in an Accident

Parents are not immune to distractions like phone conversations, checking Facebook or reading email. As the website points out, when a driver’s eyes aren’t on the road for even just four and a half seconds, it is the same as driving blindfolded the entire length of a football field at 55 miles per hour.

Determining what led to an accident can sometimes be challenging. Rarely will a person admit of his or her own accord that he or she was doing something that could have caused an accident. For help in learning if distracted driving might have been a cause, contact an attorney at Gacovino, Lake & Associates.

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