Distracted Driving

Driving is a complex task that requires various cognitive, physical, sensory and psychomotor skills. Despite these complexities, it is not unusual to observe drivers doing other activities that compete for their attention such as eating, applying make-up and talking on a cell phone. This need to multitask while driving has resulted in thousands of lost lives and millions of injuries.

One call could wreck it all

In Ontario it is against the law to use any hand held wireless device while driving.

Hands-free phones - although not currently covered by the provincial law - are also a serious road safety concern because the simple act of conversation takes your mind off the road and reduces the amount of information you take in from your driving environment.

For more information, check Parachute Canada.

Tips for distraction-free driving

Here are a few tips for distraction-free driving:

  • Plan for your drive (e.g. tell others you will not be reachable while driving, complete other activities before you get in your car)
  • Prepare by eliminating potential distractions (e.g. turn off your phone and store it in the glove box, ensure kids have what they need at a reachable distance)
  • Pull Over and Park completely off the road if you must make a call or tend to something that may interfere with your driving

Region of Waterloo Public Health has created a toolkit for workplaces on distracted driving that focuses on the dangers of cell phone use and the need for workplace policies.

A wide range of strategies to raise awareness, build skills, create supportive environments and develop a comprehensive cell phone policy are presented that can be tailored to the unique structure and environmental factors of every workplace.

To learn more about distracted driving call 519-575-4400.