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How distracting is eating while driving?

If you have been involved in a car accident in Jonesboro in which fault for the accident is immediately apparent, your first thoughts may be how could a responsible driver operate their vehicle so recklessly? Like most, you probably assume that no one gets behind the wheel of a vehicle thinking that they are going to drive carelessly; how, then, does is so easily happen? If upon speaking to the driver who caused the accident, you notice spills or stains on their clothing (or food wrappers or cups on the seats or floor of their vehicle), you may have your answer. 

The fact that today’s vehicles come equipped with cupholders and that the fast-food industry relies heavily on drive-through customers seems to indicate that drivers are encouraged to eat and drink behind the wheel. Eating and drinking seem to be such natural actions that few might actually view them as distracting. Yet after careful consideration, you start to realize that every time a driver unwraps a food item or raised a cup to their mouth while driving, they engage in a number of distracting activities. They pull one hand (or sometimes both) off the steering wheel to grasp whatever it is that they are consuming. Their eyes leave the road ahead and focus on their food or beverage. Their attention turns away from the surrounding traffic and focuses on avoiding spills. 

All of this amounts to a fairly apparent distraction. And according to statistics, not only is eating while driving more prevalent than you might assume, but there is also a strong possibility that it indeed was the cause of your accident. Data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that as many as 80 percent of car accidents may be due to eating while driving.