With technology becoming a bigger part of our lives, motorists now face a larger range of distractions when behind the wheel than at any other time. This has been proven with their having been over 16,000 convictions for driving without due care and attention last year in the UK alone.
The MoneySupermarket.com car insurance comparison company has therefore set out to find the ten biggest driving distractions which motorists currently face. This has been determined based on a survey which encompassed over 2,000 British motorists.
Social networking is becoming even more popular on the back of applications which can be downloaded for smart phones, which can be accessed at any time from any place. Making ‘tweets’ on the social networking website twitter therefore creeps into the top ten list, with 1% of the motorist surveyed admitting to have doing this while driving.
9. Checking Facebook
Once again thanks to smart phones, Facebook has also made an appearance on the list, with 2% of motorists admitting to having updated their Facebook profiles while driving.
In reality, it is unsurprising that Facebook has made an appearance on the list with there believed to be 750 million active Facebook users worldwide.
5% of motorists admitted to having applied cosmetic products while driving due to being in too much of a rush. This is incredibly dangerous with the driver obviously having to take their eyes off the road for long intervals.
5% of drivers also admitted to having been distracted by tiredness while driving. This has become a big concern for motoring authorities in recent years, with prominent advertising campaigns having been funded to warn about the dangers of driving while compromised by a lack of sleep or late at night.
A number of road side hotels now offer cheap deals for motorists looking for a couple of hours sleep before continuing their journey.
With some motorists admitting to using their phones to update social networking accounts, it is therefore unsurprising that 16% of drivers admitted to texting while behind the wheel.
Drivers who are found by police to be using their phones while behind the wheel will be issued with financial penalties and may have points added to their licence.
5. Watching other motorists
21% of drivers admitted that they had taken their eyes off the road ahead in order to inspect an accident involved other motorists. This is despite the increased likelihood of them being involved in an accident themselves as a result of them taking their eyes off the road in order to do this.
4. Making/receiving phone calls
Despite campaigns warning about the dangers of using phones while driving, 23% of drivers still admitted to making or receiving phone calls without the aid of a hands free kit.
This is a shocking statistic given that there are now many cheap hands-free driving devices available which actually cost less to purchase than a financial penalty for driving without due care and attention.
Like the 5% of motorists who apply cosmetics while driving, 51% of survey respondents also admitted to eating while behind the wheel due to being in a rush.
This obviously requires the driver to take at least one hand off the wheel, and will be considered to be a motoring offence by police.
The same number of drivers also admitted to drinking while behind the wheel. This doesn’t necessarily mean alcoholic beverages, with soft drinks also included.
Like eating while driving, this also requires motorists to take one hand off the wheel which compromises their driving abilities.
However, the biggest distraction faced by motorists is music, with 61% of survey respondents nominating this as having been a distraction while they have been driving.
This has actually become even more of a danger in recent years, with many drivers now using their iPods while driving.