Defined: Distracted Driving

  • Hands on the wheel
  • Eyes on the road
  • Focus on driving 

These are some of the most basic driving rules. However, you may be surprised to know that many drivers don’t always practice them. 

Failing to practice any one of these three rules means you are driving distracted, which is defined by the CDC as “…driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving, and therefore, can increase the chance of a motor vehicle crash”—essentially, anything that takes away your attention from driving. 

Driving distracted not only puts the driver and their passengers at risk, but also other drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. To ensure your safety, as well as the safety of others, take some time to familiarize yourself with the various types of distractions and how they can negatively affect your driving around Albuquerque or anywhere you hit the road! 

Distracted Driving

The CDC categorizes distracted driving into three main types: visual, manual, and cognitive. Some situations are interrelated, and can be considered a distraction in all three categories, such as texting. Others are category-specific. All, however, are dangerous, and should be avoided at all costs! 


Anything that takes your eyes off the road, even for a split-second, is a visual distraction. This is the most common type of distraction and can include:

  • Looking at scenery
  • Searching for something in a purse, bag, compartment, etc.
  • Tending to a child or pet in the vehicle 


Taking your hands off the wheel for any reason, is a manual distraction, even if it’s to perform a vehicle-related task, such as changing the radio station, lowering the volume, or adjusting the temperature. Other forms of manual distraction include:

  • Eating or drinking
  • Applying makeup 
  • Reaching towards the backseat

A cognitive distraction is when your focus is diverted from driving and fixated on something else. We are often cognitively distracted and don’t even realize it, as many distractions are done subconsciously, and can include:

  • Driving a familiar route 
  • Daydreaming or thinking of work, what groceries you need, home tasks, etc. 
  • Conversing with someone in the vehicle 

Don’t Drive Distracted, Do Call The Dinelli Law Firm

It’s estimated that each year in the US, 3,000 people die in car crashes involving a distracted driver—that’s an average of 8 people a day, and even more who suffer an injury. If you become a victim of distracted driving, turn to the Albuquerque car accident lawyers of The Dinelli Law Firm. Combining years of experience with our dedication to you, we’ll fight for you and the compensation you deserve! 

Take this as a friendly reminder to make the conscious decision to be a good and safe driver each time you take to the road, and remember to follow the three basic rules: hands on the wheel, eyes on the road, and focus on driving!