Summer Driving Distractions

July 14th, 2023

photo of side view mirror with sunset in background

Limit Driving Distractions this Summer

No matter what time of year, plenty of things can distract you while driving. However, more potential distractions can arise in the summer with nicer weather, children being out of school, a vacation mindset, and increased traffic. Despite these issues, it’s important to promote a safe driving environment all season long.

Here are some common summer driving distractions and tips on how to minimize them.

More Drivers on the Road
During the summer, more drivers are on the road because they’re taking road trips, weekend getaways, or simply enjoying getting out of the house. People drive 20% more miles in summer than in winter, according to Carsurance. Some of these drivers are new teenage drivers. Though teens should always follow safe driving tips, experienced drivers should also be on alert and practice safe behaviors with the increase of vehicles on the roads.

People in Unfamiliar Areas and on Unfamiliar Roads
Exploring new areas for fun or driving through them to get to your vacation destination can cause multiple distractions due to a lack of familiarity. Drivers may take their attention off the road to look at and process information on road signs, such as speed limits, warning signs, and highway exits, or to look at new sights like landmarks or scenic views. If drivers know they will be in an unfamiliar area, they should prepare by reviewing the route to their destination, whether on a map or navigation app, before traveling and allowing time to sightsee if necessary.

Kids in the Car
Since the kids are out of school, you may spend more time with them in the car, where they can be a huge distraction. Whether they’re complaining about the length of the car ride or asking for things you can’t give them, it’s essential to keep children entertained and provide them with plenty of activities during long car rides to ensure everyone’s safety. Nowadays, you can easily entertain children with electronic devices that allow them to play their favorite games and watch their favorite TV shows, so you can keep your eyes and focus on the road.

Gear in the Car
Objects that are not adequately secure and organized can become an easy distraction since they move around and can potentially break or create loud noises while driving. Whether it’s luggage for a trip, equipment for a sporting event, or groceries, you should arrange everything in your back seat or trunk to allow little to no movement. To eliminate loose cargo movement, drivers should consider securing their gear into place with a bungee cord or ratchet strap.

Not Paying Attention
Getting lost in conversations with passengers, turning up your music, and quickly checking your phone when a notification goes off can easily cause drivers to stop paying attention to the road. To ensure a safe trip, keep conversations to a minimum, turn the radio volume down, and pause notifications on your phone until you’ve reached your destination.

GPS Audio Notifications
While a GPS is a helpful navigation tool, its constant alerts about upcoming directions can be distracting. Whether it be a ping or voice command, a notification can immediately divert a driver’s attention, causing them to look at their electronic device. Some drivers even input their destination’s address while in motion when they find themselves in an unfamiliar area. Anyone using a GPS should always follow safety precautions for navigation devices to avoid getting in an accident.

More Motorcyclists/Bicyclist/Pedestrians
During the summer, more people are out on their motorcycles, bicycles, or taking a stroll. Since drivers have to share the road with motorcyclists and bicyclists and pedestrians can cross the street at any time, they should be highly aware of their surroundings. Drivers should always travel cautiously, use turn signals, and follow the speed limit, especially in neighborhoods and towns with heavier cyclists and pedestrian traffic.

Constructions Zones
Summertime often brings more road construction projects, which can cause traffic jams and delay travel time. Drivers should always look for construction zone signs, detours, and road or lane closures to prepare for their next plan of action. If road crews provide instructions, follow them carefully, and if you know there is construction on your regular route, plan an alternate one.

While you’re having fun driving around this summer, always remember to prioritize safety regardless of any distractions that may arise. Stay focused, obey traffic laws, and be alert to changing road conditions. Doing so can ensure a safe and enjoyable driving experience for you and your passengers.

If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident, contact the car accident lawyers at Flager & Associates today by calling (215) 953-5200. We provide free case evaluations.

Adam Flager, Esq.Written by Adam D. Flager, Esq., Associate at Flager & Associates, PC

With his practice focused on litigation, Adam primarily represents clients in personal injury cases, such as motor vehicle, slip and fall, defective products, and construction and worksite accidents. He is licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the State of New Jersey, the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the District of New Jersey, and the United States Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit. Adam received his J.D. from Widener University School of Law in 2009, where he graduated with pro-Bono Distinction.

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