Backseat Drivers Rank High Among Distractions for Drivers
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BackSeatDrivingBackseat Drivers Rank High Among Distractions for Drivers

In recent months, we have all seen and heard several stories regarding the dangers of distracted driving.  Most of us at this point understand that fiddling with a cell phone, reading or sending text messages or playing with the radio dial are all dangerous activities that take our focus off of the road.  We have also seen that distractions for drivers change over time.  30 years ago cell phones were obviously not a problem yet distracted driving already was one of the leading causes of car accidents.

What many of us have learned if we did not know it already was that regardless of the type of distraction, we need to have a clear mind and an uninterrupted focus on the road in order to avoid being distracted and thereby inviting danger.  Yet according to a recent survey, perhaps the oldest distraction to driving in existence remains an enormous problem.  That problem is backseat drivers and their tendency to take the focus of motorists off of their driving environments.  Perhaps this reality will never really change and people will need to take steps to minimize the risks presented by it.

We have all been behind the wheel at one point or another when someone in the vehicle has told us to slow down, to speed up, to take that shortcut or to watch out for that vehicle in front of us.  Many of us can block that out if it only happens once or twice, but if people act as backseat drivers repeatedly it can become quite annoying.  When drivers are suddenly paying more attention to answering passengers who are offering criticism than to the road in front of them, they are just as distracted as someone who is speaking on a cell phone.

Insurance.com recently did a survey of 500 drivers, and they found that backseat drivers were still among the most common forms of distraction.  They also found that the people that were most likely to act as backseat drivers included:

  • Spouses
  • Parents
  • Siblings
  • Old friends
  • People who had ridden as that driver’s passenger regularly

Basically, the study found that familiarity tends to lead to more instances of backseat driving, as the passenger will feel more comfortable in criticizing that motorist.  Familiarity also tends to lead to drivers being more accustomed to feeling annoyed when someone is telling them that they are doing something wrong.

There are steps that can be taken to help deal with the problem that is backseat driving.  The most obvious initial step to take is to have that driver simply talk to the passenger who engages in this conduct and to ask him or her to please stop doing so because it is distracting.  The specifics of such a request will largely depend on the nature of that relationship, but drivers who deal with this problem need to do something about it.  If you have been injured in a crash caused by a distracted driver, contact the Florida accident lawyers at Bernstein & Maryanoff today to schedule a free initial consultation.

Free consultation: There is never a charge to talk to a personal injury attorney at the law firm of Bernstein & Maryanoff. With a principal office in Miami, numerous other offices across Florida, and the willingness to make house calls, our attorneys will be there when you need them. We handle all cases on a contingency fee basis.

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