Holidays Have You Distracted? Use Extra Caution Behind the Wheel
With the holidays fast approaching, people tend to get busier. Between balancing home and work responsibilities, there is decorating to do, gifts to buy, parties to host, and social events to attend. Trying to fit everything into your schedule can easily leave you feeling frazzled. Unfortunately, it can also have an impact on your health and safety, by increasing your car accident risks.
Distracted Driving Over the Holidays
According to the Florida Integrated Report Exchange System (FIRES), more than 400 car accidents occur in St Lucie County during December each year. This makes it one of the busiest months in terms of crashes and collisions, with distracted driving one of the leading causes.
It is easy to get distracted by all the holiday decor and glittering lights at this time of year, as well as by all the tasks listed on your to daily do list. Rushing out over lunch to fit in some holiday gift shopping, being in a hurry to get to or leave stores, and stepping on the gas to make it to after work social functions on time all can conspire to make car accidents more likely to occur. Situations which can increase your odds of being involved in a car accident include:
- When driving through parking lots and pulling out of spaces;
- While making turns near busy shopping plazas;
- When encountering light displays in neighborhoods;
- While sitting in heavy traffic.
Keep Your Mind on Driving This Holiday Season
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) distracted driving is responsible for more than 1,000 car accidents each day throughout the United States. Being distracted decreases the odds that you will respond in time to sudden changes in traffic or emergency situations and increases the severity of the injuries you are likely to suffer.
Most drivers associate distracted driving with tasks such as using cell phones, texting, or changing radio or GPS settings, all of which cause you to take your eyes off the road and your hands off the wheel. While these are all dangerous, the CDC warns there is another type of distraction to be aware of: not paying attention to the task of driving itself.
Cognitive distractions are just as dangerous to drivers and just as likely to result in a crash or collision. This includes common behaviors at this time of year, such as:
- Mentally planning for holiday event later in the evening;
- Running through your holiday gift list in your mind;
- Trying to remember all the items you need to get from the grocery store to make holiday goodies;
- Compiling guest lists in your head for holiday parties.
Reach Out to Us Today for Help
Unfortunately, even when you manage to keep your mind focused on driving, the actions of other motorists can put you in jeopardy. When injuries occur, the Law Firm of William E. Raikes, III is here to help. Contact our Fort Pierce car accident attorney and request a consultation to discuss how we can assist you in getting the compensation you need to recover.