Learning to drive

Distractions

The number one cause of car crashes is driver distraction, and is it any wonder when there are so many things just waiting to grab your attention? Even if you’re used to multi-tasking, trying to juggle all the aspects of driving with something such as checking your texts or drinking a coffee is just asking for trouble – never mind all the peripheral stuff that’s going on outside your car.

How can I limit distractions?

Face the music

The music you listen to can have a massive effect on how you drive. According to research by Professor Warren Brodsky of Ben Gurion University, listening to a favourite track at high volume could worsen your concentration. That’s because instead of thinking about the road ahead, you are drawn in by the music. The professor’s research showed young drivers performed better without music, or when listening to easy listening or jazz rather than rock or hip hop.

Dealing with distraction

  • If you need to do something distracting, find a safe place to pull over.
  • Recognise what makes you distracted, then work out whether or not you really do need it.
  • Make sure you’re ready to drive before setting off. After an emotional event, you might need to calm down.
  • Use technology sensibly – or don’t use it at all.
  • Plan your journey in advance, so you’re not having to work out your route as you go along.