Many people believe that they can do more than one thing at one time. In most cases, they're right. The trouble is that when people multitask, they may be taking their minds off more important tasks to get things done more quickly. For example, a driver who decides to text behind the wheel thinks he or she can text quickly without compromising his or her driving abilities, but the truth is that any time spent looking away from the road is hazardous to the driver and others.
There are myths that further enforce the false idea that you can drive safely while doing other things. Here are three that you should know the truth about.
1. Talking to a passenger is the same as talking on the phone
This isn't true. Passengers in your vehicle have the potential to alert you to problems up ahead or to keep you focused on driving. When you're on the phone, the other party has no idea what you're doing, so he or she can't help you avoid danger.
2. Voice-to-text applications make texting safe behind the wheel
Even voice-to-text applications are distracting. If you have to correct errors on the screen, then you're going to be visually distracted. If you're thinking about what to say next, you're mentally distracted. Both have the potential to combine and put you at risk of a crash.
3. Texting or using the phone at a stop light is safe
While it likely is safer than texting while your vehicle is in motion, it's still not as safe as not texting or talking on the phone at all. You could be distracted by the information you've just received or be focusing on the phone instead of the light that just turned green. Remember that people can be distracted up to 27 seconds after a voice text is sent, according to the American Automobile Association.
The only way to be safe behind the wheel is to really focus on the road and what you're doing. Those who don't do that could cause serious accidents that impact other people's lives forever.