The road safety charity, the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM), together with the technology provider, Vision Critical, conducted a survey of 1,447 drivers. The survey provided insight into the various ways drivers on our roads get distracted and what the most common causes are.
The most commonly mentioned cause of distraction brought up by respondents were children in the car. This was mentioned by as many as 29 per cent of drivers in the survey.
Close behind this is changing the radio channel, a cause of distraction mentioned by 27 per cent of respondents.
Other top distractions include backseat drivers in general, cited by 26 per cent of the respondents. Busy lifestyles and a constant need to multitask also feature heavily with mobile phone use cited as a driving distraction by 24 per cent of survey respondents. Using mobile phones while driving is not only illegal in most circumstances but can be highly distracting from driving particularly without the benefit of the latest luxury car technology
Satellite navigation was mentioned as a driving distraction by 15 per cent of motorists in the survey. Narrowly behind this reason are attractive pedestrians, drivers or passengers – 14 per cent cited this as a distraction from driving. In fact, 23 per cent of male drivers responding to the survey admit to being distracted by attractive people compared to just three per cent of women.
In the same survey, nine per cent of drivers admitted that they have crashed because of a distraction. Among those four per cent of drivers said they were injured in a crash because of a distraction.
As many as 18 per cent of survey respondents admitted they have had a minor scraped because of a distraction while driving.
All of these finding follows another similar survey where four out of ten drivers admitted not fully concentrating while they were driving.
Distractions are major cause of crashes on UK roads – recent police statistics reveal that that mobile phone use and other distractions were a factor in up to one hundred and five deaths on our roads last year.
The chief executive of IAM, Simon Best, commented: "People who think they can multi-task while driving are kidding themselves. If you take your eyes of the road for just two seconds at 30 miles per hour, you’ll travel close to 90 feet, effectively blind.
All drivers develop bad habits over time. The key to reducing distractions and their impact is to learn to look upon your driving as a skill that needs continuous evaluation and improvement."