distracted driving

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distracted driving2016-12-27T22:07:21+00:00

distracted driving 

distracted driving image from New Medical Terms

distracted driving

PUBLIC HEALTH

A self-explanatory term for driving a motor vehicle (car, truck, bus) whilst engaged in a distracting activity. Distractions include any activity that diverts the drivers’ attention away from the visual, spatial and manual functions required for safe driving.

Distractions range from smoking and eating, which are regarded as causing minimal distraction, putting on makeup and use of interactive devices to make phone calls and text message, for which there is marked attentional diversion as well as functional diversion, in which one or more hands are removed from the steering wheel to dial numbers, search one’s phone book, text, etc.

In 2003 cell (mobile) phone use was implicated in 333,000 injuries, 12,000 serious to critical injuries and 2600 fatalities. Text messaging use has been less studied, but is thought to have caused an equal number of injuries and death.

Reference JAMA 2013; 309:877-8

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