Distracted driving is a problem across the United States. It is such a problem, it holds the top spot on the National Transportation Safety Board’s 2019-2020 Most Wanted List of Safety Improvements. However, there is some good news in Georgia.

According to an article by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, traffic fatalities related to distracted driving have fallen in Georgia between 2017 and 2018. The article suggests the change is probably linked to the state’s distracted driving law which went into effect July 2018, making it illegal for drivers to hold electronic devices while driving.

Although Georgia has seen some progress, there is still room for improvement. Even hands-free technology can be a distraction. While holding a cell phone would count as a manual distraction, hands-free technology can still be visual or cognitive distractions.

Visual and cognitive distractions

Anything that takes your eyes off the road can be a visual distraction. This means that looking at your GPS device, changing the music or adjusting vehicle controls can all be driving distractions. Other visual distractions include looking for items on the floor, putting on makeup or admiring the view.

Cognitive distractions can be anything that takes your mind off the task of driving. This means that talking on the phone, even with hands-free technology, can be a distraction. Daydreaming, road rage or even just thinking about something upsetting can also be cognitive distractions.

Avoiding distractions

As a driver, you can set yourself up for success by knowing your temptations for distracted driving and taking actions to prevent yourself indulging in those temptations. GPS devices and vehicle controls can be adjusted before you begin driving, and favorite radio stations can be preset in your system. Consider waking up earlier to finish personal grooming before you leave the house. You can also consider making a personal policy not to look for dropped items or answer phone calls until you are safely parked.

Although distracted driving in Georgia has been reduced overall, it is still causing tragic injuries and deaths. If you have been injured by a distracted driver, it may be appropriate to seek compensation for your injuries. No one should have to suffer because of the actions of a distracted driver.