There is no way around it – Halloween is one seriously distracting night of the year. We all know this. There will be people in the streets, crossing the street, and wearing costumes so dark you can barely see them. While pedestrians have their own jobs to do to stay safe, motorists can at the very least prevent themselves from doing any kind of distracted driving on this extra-spooky night of the year.
Know Your Distracted Driving Risks
The definition of distracted driving is any activity that keeps the driver from paying attention to the road. There are many types of distracted driving, including:
- Talking on the phone
- Using the GPS
- Taking photos
- Watching videos
- Changing the radio station
- Turning around to people in the backseat
- Having too many passengers in the car
While about half of these activities have to do with a mobile device, there are clearly multiple distractions that can take your eyes off the road or your hands off the wheel. Just say no, especially when you’re in busy neighborhoods and know trick-or-treaters can leap out at any moment.
Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving
If you follow these suggestions below and make them rules in your vehicle, you’ll be safer for it and your fellow drivers will be too (on Halloween and every other night of the year). Don’t make yourself a hazard or a casualty just because you had to read that one inconsequential text.
- Stash the phone: The worst thing you can do is have your phone sitting right beside you. Put it in the glove box, in your purse, in the trunk – just stash it somewhere that is impossible for you to reach while you’re driving so you won’t even be tempted to try to get your hands on it.
- Turn off notifications: A dinging, buzzing, ringing phone is distracting. Set it to automatically turn to silent when you are driving so you won’t have the urge to check and see who is reaching out. You can answer all texts, phone calls, and emails when you park your vehicle.
- Plan your route: Chances are, you’re not traveling too far to enjoy your Halloween fun, so plan out your route so you know exactly where you’re headed. This will help you avoid the need to use your GPS and familiarize you with the route so you aren’t distracted by unfamiliar territory.
- Take pictures later: Sure, you want to capture all the fun, silly, spooky, and adorable moments on Halloween, especially if you have kids or if you dress up yourself. Take pictures before you get in the car and when you’re out of it, not while you’re driving.
Beyond Distracted Driving
There are two other big problems on Halloween: drunk driving and drowsy driving. Festivities abound in and around Halloween. If you’re planning on a grown-up party, make sure you have a designated driver – that means someone who doesn’t drink at all, not just someone who drinks the least.
Drowsy driving is also a distraction. If you are tired or fatigued, pull over and ask someone else to get behind the wheel or do not drive at all. You can’t risk your sleepy eyes to the dark and heavily populated roads on October 31.
If you are involved in an automobile accident in Michigan, contact Femminineo Attorneys in Mt. Clemens, MI, to discuss your case.