When driving for work you may find yourself more susceptible to distractions both inside and outside the vehicle. You might receive a hand-free call, be discussing an upcoming presentation, or maybe you’re thinking about parking at your next delivery. Whatever the reason, being able to successfully manage these distractions will ensure you or your drivers get to where they need to be safely.
Here are some top tips to avoid distractions from IAM RoadSmart:
- Most crashes happen close to home, so ensure familiarity does not breed contempt by keeping your focus on routes travelled frequently. Glancing away from the road for a few seconds can make you miss that vital clue of a dangerous situation developing.
- No multi-tasking – even the shortest phone call takes your attention away from the road. Fleet drivers may find themselves under pressure to multi-task, but it’s important to remember that managing these risks result in a safer environment for all road users. Latest campaigns involving unmarked police ‘supercabs’ have demonstrated the need to clamp down on this.
- Get your sat-nav ready before you set off on your journey. This limits the chances of you needing to adjust it while on the move and takes away the likelihood of it causing unnecessary distraction.
- Distracted drivers swerve from lane to lane, drive too close to the car in front or react too slowly. These actions can bring you or your drivers to the attention of the police who can issue a careless driving ticket at the roadside – as well as being a danger to other road users.
- Eat and drink when parked. Not only does eating and drinking take your eyes off the road, but dropped food and spilled drink don’t mix well with smooth and professional driving.
- If you are a fleet manager and need to contact one of your drivers on the road, do not expect them to answer right away. It is safer for them to pull over and take a hands-free call and factoring in time to do this will allow them to manage their distractions effectively.
IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards, Richard Gladman said: “If you take your driving seriously then it limits the chances of distraction. Processing all the information from around your vehicle, taking up the right position on the road and making smooth progress are more than enough to occupy all your brain power. The best drivers can predict risky situation well before they can cause a problem. Allowing yourself to be distracted completely undermines that skill.”