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What is all the buzz about multitasking while driving? I do it and it is even legal, at least in Florida!

I am a multitasking king; it is a gift of mine. I can do a quick 3 miles on the treadmill while reading the NY Times on my Kindle, talking on my cell phone, responding to emails on my Blackberry, watching the news on TV, talking to the person next to me, and drinking water all at the same time, and I haven’t injured myself or anyone else.

I am an experienced driver and can drive while looking up a phone number on my Blackberry and then chat away as I maneuver through traffic, (it is a hands-free set up, so hey!), I can even send a quick message, and I have never caused an accident… so, what is the problem with multitasking while driving? I can do it.

The answer is, plenty is wrong with driving and multitasking! In fact, more and more research is proving it to be a dangerous activity that is plaguing our society today.

We know the risks, yet we continue to do it, even me. Even being an accident attorney for over 30 years and:

  • knowing the risks and dangers of distracted driving, of which cell phone use is the #1 culprit,
  • having blogged about the risks of chatting and texting for many months now,
  • being aware of the news of accidents a caused by this dangerous activity,
  • even having represented clients that have been injured by distracted drivers,

Yet, I still do it… I admit it, I am guilty!

Obviously, we all want to believe that we can do it all; multitask away and also be a safe driver on the road, but, it is just not the case! Here are the facts:

  • Driving while celling (hand-held or hands-free) is as dangerous as driving drunk,
  • Cell chatting drivers are 4 to 5 times more likely to cause an accident,
  • Texting raises a driver’s crash risk by 23 times!

It really does not take a Zen Master to know how important it is to be in the moment when you drive, to not be distracted, but to just drive. We all know driving is a potentially dangerous activity that requires our full attention and doing so might save a life that could be our own or one of a loved one, yet most of us still don’t do it, and we drive distracted, ignoring the basic rules of driving:

  • Both hands on the wheel,
  • Both eyes on the road and
  • Our full attention and mind on the road.

Facts are Facts; we all have to admit it, including me, multitasking while driving is a dangerous risky undertaking, no matter our age, experience or how good we are at it in other areas of our life.

The reality is that we need to turn off the cell while driving and give the road our full attention that it requires and save multitasking for the treadmill, before we get on the road, at a rest stop, or when we reach our destination.

Maybe there needs to be a Rehab course for driving multitaskers? If so, sign me up!

For more information on this important topic:

Bad news for Floridians on the road, texting and celling behind the wheel remains legal

Driving Distractions 101

Today Show Video; Texting While Driving Caught on Tape

One Comment

  1. Gravatar for Steve Lombardi

    Honorable Jeffrey: To appreciate how dangerous it is consider the pilot of a plane you were flying in was multi-tasking while trying to land your flight. Dangerous? I rest my case.

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