If someone asked you to describe a distracted driver, what would you say? Odds are you would mention someone who is using their phone while driving. Maybe you would say that they are texting and driving, but it’s possible that they could be using the phone to do other things, such as choosing the music they wanted to listen to or trying to follow the GPS.
The common denominator here is that someone who is using their phone definitely looks like they are distracted. It is obvious to an outsider that they are not paying attention to the road or holding onto the steering wheel with both hands. But it’s also important to remember that someone can certainly look like they are attentive and still be distracted.
The role of cognitive distraction
The issue is that there are mental distractions, along with physical and visual distractions. These mental distractions can be taking place even when it looks like someone is in complete control of the vehicle.
An example of this could be when someone gets lost in thought. They may be daydreaming so thoroughly that they don’t even remember driving to their destination.
Another example is when someone has an emotional connection to the music that they’re listening to. This often leads people to get distracted by the music itself, or they may even begin to sing along. They can still be holding the wheel and looking at the road, but they remain distracted as long as they’re paying too much attention to that music.
If you do get injured by a distracted driver, you may be able to seek compensation for your costs.