Advertising
Advertising

Who’s at the Wheel? Technology Causing Distracted Driving and Other Stories of Multi-Tasking

Who’s at the Wheel? Technology Causing Distracted Driving and Other Stories of Multi-Tasking

    When drivers are on the road, they often seem to forget that they are not in their living room, kitchen, or bedroom. As the average car weight is in the two-ton range (up to 4,000 lbs) and with the casual attention some drivers give to their driving, it is no surprise that accidents occur on the highways.

    Despite the devotion to multitasking, recent reports claim that humans function better if they don’t multi-task. That is proven often with some of the things that happen when people get behind the wheel of a car.

    Advertising

    Paying Attention to the Rules of the Road

    Most states have rules against driving distracted, not to mention driving drunk.

    In the Texas Driver’s Handbook, a distraction is defined as “anything that takes the driver’s attention from the driving task.” Distractions are more common than people think. And focusing on more than one thing — multitasking — actually has a negative effect on a person’s performance.

    One Thing at a Time

    Although driving for experienced drivers can be called “unconscious competent,” considering their mastery as having some measure of control, drivers took longer to reach their destinations if they used cell phones.

    Advertising

    Since our brains really handle multitasking by “task switching,” says author Guy Winch in his book, we really only have a finite amount of attention we can devote to a task and be productive.[1]

    The Appeal of Multitasking With Apps

    People describe multitaskers with a sense of awe at all they accomplish. The converse is that doing only one thing at a time is almost seen as though someone is a slacker. Why can’t you compile your household shopping list while you help your child with their homework? Talking with someone while you text is seen as normal. So, driving and doing something else is seen as a commonplace multitasking action.

    Trouble Behind the Wheel

    Statistics bear out the idea that young drivers cause much of the damage. Drivers in their 20s are 24 percent of drivers in all fatal crashes, but are 27 percent of the distracted drivers, and 33 percent of the distracted drivers that were using cell phones in fatal crashes.[2]

    Advertising

    Just such a crash involved a 22-year-old male who was using his Apple iPhone to FaceTime while driving.[3] He lost control of his car, killing a five-year-old and injuring her father.

      Because text messaging requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention from the driver, it is by far one of the most alarming distractions.[4] In a survey noted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Ad Council’s joint text alert trouble website, the 2015 survey “found that one-third of drivers admitted to texting while driving, and three-quarters saying they’ve seen others do it.”

      Advertising

      A Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) survey claims that sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving blind at 55-mph for the length of an entire football field.[5] That is long enough to do damage on a road and potentially put other drivers and yourself at risk for danger.

      Staying Tech-Free and Distraction-Free

      Texting, talking, and otherwise multitasking on cell phones is rampant while driving. Some apps have added in standard safety features that disable features while the user is traveling over a certain speed limit in order to try to alleviate the dangers. However, the best way to stay safe while driving is simply to put the phone away and pull over if you need to send a text or answer a call.

      Taking your eyes off the road, even for a second, can result in an accident. Playing the odds on when someone does take their eyes off the road is a gamble. All too often people take the gamble. Sometimes they lose and when they do, they often lose a life too.

      The many accidents that occur in rush hour traffic show that, despite most drivers knowing the route they take to work every day, they choose to engage in distracted driving that causes those accidents. Illogical? Yes, Mr. Spock would agree.

      Featured photo credit: shutterstock via shutterstock.com

      Reference

      [1] Health: 12 Reasons to Stop Multitasking Now!
      [2] Stop Texts Stop Wrecks: Driving Facts
      [3] Thomas J Henry Law: Lawsuit Filed Against Apple In Fatal FaceTime Crash
      [4] Stop Texts Stop Wrecks: Driving Facts
      [5] Stop Texts Stop Wrecks: Driving Facts

      More by this author

      Who’s at the Wheel? Technology Causing Distracted Driving and Other Stories of Multi-Tasking Is Your Website Costing You Sales? Staying Afloat: Why Kids Should Learn to Swim If You’re a Burned Out Entrepreneur There’s a Solution Common Signs and Symptoms of Depression in Parents

      Trending in Family

      1 If You Think You’re in an Unhappy Marriage, Remember These 5 Things 2 What Happened to Family Dinners? Why We Should Bring Them Back 3 How to Cope with Empty Nest Syndrome and Stop Feeling Lonely 4 How Not to Let Work Take Priority over Spending Time With Family 5 35 Life Hacks for Kids That Make Parenting Easier And More Fun

      Read Next

      Advertising
      Advertising
      Advertising

      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

      Why Is Goal Setting Important to a Truly Fulfilling Life?

      Why Is Goal Setting Important to a Truly Fulfilling Life?

      In Personal Development-speak, we are always talking about goals, outcomes, success, desires and dreams. In other words, all the stuff we want to do, achieve and create in our world.

      And while it’s important for us to know what we want to achieve (our goal), it’s also important for us to understand why we want to achieve it; the reason behind the goal or some would say, our real goal.

      Why is goal setting important?

      1. Your needs and desire will be fulfilled.

      Sometimes when we explore our “why”, (why we want to achieve a certain thing) we realize that our “what” (our goal) might not actually deliver us the thing (feeling, emotion, internal state) we’re really seeking.

      For example, the person who has a goal to lose weight in the belief that weight loss will bring them happiness, security, fulfillment, attention, popularity and the partner of their dreams. In this instance, their “what” is weight-loss and their “why” is happiness (etc.) and a partner.

      Advertising

      Six months later, they have lost the weight (achieved their goal) but as is often the case, they’re not happier, not more secure, not more confident, not more fulfilled and in keeping with their miserable state, they have failed to attract their dream partner.

      After all, who wants to be with someone who’s miserable? They achieved their practical goal but still failed to have their needs met.

      So they set a goal to lose another ten pounds. And then another. And maybe just ten more. With the destructive and erroneous belief that if they can get thin enough, they’ll find their own personal nirvana. And we all know how that story ends.

      2. You’ll find out what truly motivates you

      The important thing in the process of constructing our best life is not necessarily what goals we set (what we think we want) but what motivates us towards those goals (what we really want).

      The sooner we begin to explore, identify and understand what motivates us towards certain achievements, acquisitions or outcomes (that is, we begin moving towards greater consciousness and self awareness), the sooner we will make better decisions for our life, set more intelligent (and dare I say, enlightened) goals and experience more fulfilment and less frustration.

      Advertising

      We all know people who have achieved what they set out to, only to end up in the same place or worse (emotionally, psychologically, sociologically) because what they were chasing wasn’t really what they were needing.

      What we think we want will rarely provide us with what we actually need.

      3. Your state of mind will be a lot healthier

      We all set specific goals to achieve/acquire certain things (a job, a car, a partner, a better body, a bank balance, a title, a victory) because at some level, most of us believe (consciously or not) that the achievement of those goals will bring us what we really seek; joy, fulfilment, happiness, safety, peace, recognition, love, acceptance, respect, connection.

      Of course, setting practical, material and financial goals is an intelligent thing to do considering the world we live in and how that world works.

      But setting goals with an expectation that the achievement of certain things in our external, physical world will automatically create an internal state of peace, contentment, joy and total happiness is an unhealthy and unrealistic mindset to inhabit.

      Advertising

      What you truly want and need

      Sometimes we need to look beyond the obvious (superficial) goals to discover and secure what we really want.

      Sadly, we live in a collective mindset which teaches that the prettiest and the wealthiest are the most successful.

      Some self-help frauds even teach this message. If you’re rich or pretty, you’re happy. If you’re both, you’re very happy. Pretty isn’t what we really want; it’s what we believe pretty will bring us. Same goes with money.

      When we cut through the hype, the jargon and the self-help mumbo jumbo, we all have the same basic goals, desires and needs:

      Joy, fulfilment, happiness, safety, peace, recognition, love, acceptance, respect, connection.

      Advertising

      Nobody needs a mansion or a sport’s car but we all need love.

      Nobody needs massive pecs, six percent body-fat, a face lift or bigger breasts but we all need connection, acceptance and understanding.

      Nobody needs to be famous but we all need peace, calm, balance and happiness.

      The problem is, we live in a culture which teaches that one equals the other. If only we lived in a culture which taught that real success is far more about what’s happening in our internal environment, than our external one.

      It’s a commonly-held belief that we’re all very different and we all have different goals — whether short term or long term goals. But in many ways we’re not, and we don’t; we all want essentially the same things.

      Now all you have to do is see past the fraud and deception and find the right path.

      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

      Read Next