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The impact of cognitive distractions on driving capabilities

On Behalf of | Apr 22, 2024 | Car Accidents

While most people know by now that distracted driving is dangerous, it still happens on Delaware roads on a regular basis. Some sources of distraction may force you to take your eyes off the road or hands off the wheel, but manual and visual distractions might not be the only concerns involved. 

Some types of distractions could even cause you to divert your attention from your current task. Even if you keep your eyes on the road, your ability to respond to certain situations may still be limited while your attention is focused elsewhere. While you might take steps to avoid engaging in such activity, what happens if others fail to do the same? 

The impact 

Talking on a cell phone or hearing a text message read aloud are just two examples of actions that could divert your attention from the task at hand. Some ways cognitive distractions might affect your driving capabilities could include: 

  • Reduced response times: Anything that diverts your focus may inherently impact your ability to respond to situations that arise and could increase your risk of creating a dangerous situation. 
  • Limited awareness: Cognitive distractions may inherently disrupt your ability to track nearby objects and maintain constant awareness of your surroundings while driving.  
  • Impact on judgment: Studies also indicate that the effect on your cognitive function could also reduce your ability to make snap judgment calls, which is an essential component of safe driving. 
  • Multitasking: The human brain cannot multitask without dividing attention between the tasks at hand. The results could prove dire even if this only lasts a few seconds. 

Even hands-free devices might not protect against cognitive distractions, and if you cross paths with a distracted driver, there might not be much you can do to avoid an ensuing collision. 

After a collision occurs 

Collisions involving distracted drivers continue to occur at an alarming rate. The outcome of such an incident could have a disastrous impact on your life, potentially leaving you with severe or life-changing injuries and facing a host of financial hardships. After the collision, you might have questions about what steps you can take to protect your future. Seeking insight in evaluating your available legal avenues could play a vital role in preparing to seek the full restitution you deserve via the appropriate paths.