Did you know that texting and driving – or even just having a mobile device in your possession while driving – can land you a costly fine…and up to 6 demerit points? Many people underestimate the importance of eliminating distractions on the road, tending to believe that if they are driving under the speed limit, they are being safe.
Thanks to a massive shift towards digital technology, it is easier than ever to become distracted. It does not matter whether you are looking up alternate routes on your maps or changing the song on your Spotify playlist. Police are stricter than ever in their attempts to raise awareness on the serious outcomes of texting and driving.
Here are four easy tips to help you stay aware and avoid any consequences that could arise from distracted driving.
#1: Use a mobile friendly application to block distractions
With technology being easily accessible, there are multiple ways to avoid having the urge to use your phone while driving. Certain applications are made specifically to help you block out distractions like notifications and calls. Most of these apps allow you to customize the types of notifications you allow, and the ones you would rather avoid. Apps like Drivesafe.ly or Safedrive allow you to block notifications and you can even earn reward points that may be further redeemed for not using your phone.
#2: Make sure to have a car mount for your phone.
A distracted driver does not necessarily have to be texting and driving to get a ticket. The act of looking down at your phone without having it on a mount can be considered enough of a distraction. 5 seconds at 88km/h is like driving the length of a football field! Now, imagine doing that blind.
Invest in a phone stand that you can use to attach your phone to while driving. Not only will this prevent you from constantly looking down, but it can help you to avoid any possibility of getting a fine or causing damages on the road.
#3: Set up your GPS or music playlist before you drive.
Preparing your route before getting on the road is an essential step in maintaining your safety on the road (and the safety of others!) If your car already has a GPS system, consider using that and opt out of using your mobile device as a GPS. This will help you avoid distractions by having your phone away from you and it makes you less exposed to incoming calls or notifications.
#4: Pull over if there is an emergency.
This should go without saying but consider pulling over if there is a text message or other note that needs your immediate reply. Even if this causes you to be 5-10 minutes late to your dinner plans or appointment, it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
Now that you’ve read our tips, it’s time to invest in a good distraction-blocking app, buckle up, and drive safely. Your wallet has enough to worry about already without landing yourself a weighty fine.