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The 3 different types of driver distraction

When you think about distracted driving, you probably envision driving while trying to text. But distracted driving encompasses any activity that removes your full attention from the road in front of you. 

In Tennessee, according to Hands Free Tennessee, it is illegal to hold a cellphone while you drive and use it to write, send or read any type of text-based communication. There are other types of distraction, however, that can endanger your safety while you drive. 

1. Manual distraction

When you take your hands off of the steering wheel when driving, you become manually distracted. For example, you become manually distracted and more likely to get involved in a car accident if you reach for something on your passenger seat while your car is in motion. 

2. Cognitive distraction

Cognitive distraction occurs when your mental focus moves from driving to something else. If, for example, you converse intently with a passenger or get engrossed in a podcast while driving, you experience a degree of cognitive distraction. 

3. Visual distraction

You can become visually distracted when you stop looking at the road in front of you. This occurs when, for instance, you look at your phone, a GPS device or something else in your car while driving. 

Although you can stop yourself from becoming manually, cognitively and visually distracted when you drive, you cannot prevent other drivers from engaging in distracting activities. A distracted driving accident can result in serious injuries that could make it hard to go back to work, school or the normal activities you do every day.