Driver distraction results in many serious crashes each year, causing death and serious injury. Take time to identify potential distractions and take action to minimise the risks.
3 main types of distractions:
- Visual – taking your eyes off the road.
- Manual – taking your hands off the wheel or feet off the pedals.
- Cognitive – taking your mind off driving.
Auckland regional all attention/distracted crash statistics 2010 - 2014 (NZ Transport Agency statistics)
- 29 fatalities.
- 196 serious injuries.
The highest identified driver causes (inside the vehicle) are:
- Mobile/Smartphone usage whilst driving.
- Cigarette/radio/heater/Aircon/glove box (reaching/searching for objects and adjusting vehicle controls).
- Emotionally upset/road rage.
Using your mobile phone while driving impairs your driving performance in several ways:
- Slower reaction time especially when braking.
- Impaired ability to stay in the correct lane.
- Shorter following distances.
Using a mobile phone while driving makes drivers take their eyes off the road, their hands off the steering wheel and their minds off the road.
Handy information and advice on driver distraction
- Safer Journeys website: http://www.saferjourneys.govt.nz
- NZ Transport Agency distraction resources
- Get more information about the rules about mobile use and demerit points for mobile phone-related offences from the NZTA website.
- Have a look at Safeteendriver.co.nz, a skills and risks website for parents with teen drivers.