Tips to avoid driver distraction

Avoid intense, complicated or emotional conversations when driving – This can be tough but make an effort to pull over and/or continue the conversation at a later time – both parties can benefit from the break.

Pull over to care for children – Set up rules with your passengers to keep them from distracting you. Give kids things to do, such as books and games. Books on tape are also great, but provide earphones so the noise won’t distract you. For longer trips, plan where to stop for breaks. This helps everyone re-focus before getting back in the vehicle.

Adjust your seat, climate controls and other devices before pulling out – thank goodness for automatic controls  – if you don’t have them, then try to set them prior to pulling out…

Ask your passengers to help navigate or adjust controls – this is great practice for articulating your thoughts and communication with others…

If you feel sleepy, find a safe place to pull over and rest.

Turn off your cell phone or pull over in a safe place if you must take a call

Stop to eat or drink – There are many things that can take your thoughts away from driving. Drinking coffee or water or eating takes very little thought. You rarely have to look away from the driving scene. However, if you spill on yourself, that’s another story. You’ll look down and think about what to do next. Now your thoughts have changed. Suggestion: Wait until you’re stopped before you drink or eat. It can wait.

Read maps, and check traffic and exits before you leave so you’re prepared  –by having an idea as to where you are going, you can get there quicker and once you are in the general vicinity, you can look up the specific location

Teach teens to limit distractions while driving.