According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the average text takes five seconds to read. At a speed of 55 mph, a vehicle will travel 100 yards – the distance of a football field – in five seconds.
Self-employed contractors rely on their phones to run their businesses and make money. Although it may be tempting to pick up the phone or respond to a text while you are driving, the risks and consequences far outweigh any short term benefit you will receive. Notifying those who may need to reach you of when your next scheduled work break will be, is a good preventative measure.
Texting involves all three types of driver distraction: visual, manual, and cognitive. The use of mobile phones is restricted for CMV drivers. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration outlines the specific restrictions, as well as the penalties and risks of using a hand-held phone or texting while driving.
Thinking about going hands-free? According to the National Safety Council, drivers talking on handheld or even hands-free devices can fail to see 50% of their surroundings . Both handheld, and hands-free cell phone use can be deadly distractions.
The resources below can help you understand the dangers of texting while driving, and the risks of hands-free devices:
Safety Tips Every Professional Driver Must Know (Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance )
Understanding the Distracted Brain (National Safety Council)
UDRIVE.UTEXT.UPAY. (Traffic Safety Marketing)
Hands Free is Not Risk FREE (National Safety Council)
The Great Multitasking Lie (National Safety Council)