On March 29, a man searching for his cell phone caused a fatal accident with another vehicle. While taking your eyes off the road for only two or three seconds to find a misplaced item might seem harmless, at freeway speeds your vehicle can travel several hundred feet in only a few seconds. Unfortunately, dropped or misplaced items can sometimes cause a distraction or even a danger if you drop them while driving. Luckily, there are several ways you can deal with dropped or misplaced items in your vehicle.
- Before you start your vehicle, make sure you know where all your important items are located. Move any items that might fall under or on top of the pedals to another location, where they will not be a distraction.
- Put your cell phone somewhere where it will not be a distraction while you are driving. Turning off the sound or telling a passenger to respond to any calls or texts can help to eliminate the distraction of answering it.
- If you feel like you need to talk on your cell phone while driving, make sure the phone is placed somewhere where it will not fall. Investing in a hands-free device and limiting the length of calls can make things at least a little safer.
- Never look down to try to find your phone or another lost item. Even if you hear a text alert or other message, continue driving. You can look at the message later.
- If items, such as cell phones, water bottles, or food do fall into your foot area, do your best to quickly push them out of the way with your foot so they will not fall on top of or underneath any of the pedals. A passenger might be able to safely remove the item, especially if you kicked it out of the way enough.
- If you do drop any items, particularly large items, near your feet, and you cannot get them out of the way well, pull off the road as soon as safely possible. Then you can safely remove the items, preventing them from pushing down any of the pedals or from getting under the pedal.
Despite the known risks concerned with taking your eyes off of the road, some drivers continue to look down while driving. If you were injured in an accident involving an inattentive driver, our personal injury attorneys can help you. Contact us for a free consultation.