New Moms Among the Most Distracted Drivers

Mar 26, 2013 Posted by in Distracted Driving, Motor Vehicle Accidents and Safety

Being a mom is a tough job that often requires a great deal of multitasking.

Survey results from American Baby Magazine and Safe Kids Worldwide reveal, however, that new moms may be trying to juggle too many tasks while driving a vehicle.

The results of the survey of 2,396 moms with children under the age of 2 reveal that an alarming number are making risky choices while driving. Specifically, they’re driving on too little sleep, talking, texting, or emailing on their cellphones and paying more attention to their child than the road. Ironically, a substantial majority (63 percent) of the moms surveyed claimed to be more cautious behind the wheel since giving birth. The statistics suggest otherwise.

1. Too Little Sleep

According to the survey, a new mother sleeps on average five hours, 20 minutes a night. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say a female adult requires seven to nine hours of sleep to function properly. Lack of sleep is a public health epidemic. Insufficient sleep renders a person incapable of remembering details and concentrating on specific tasks. It’s no surprise then that lack of sleep is also strongly linked to motor vehicle crashes.

2. Cellphone use

The survey revealed that 78 percent of new moms talk on the phone while driving, and 26 percent text or check their email behind the wheel. Most cited the need to multitask as the primary cause of this behavior. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, driving while using a cellphone reduces the brain activity associated with driving by 37 percent. Thus, cellphone use behind the wheel is an especially risky behavior for a new mom who is transporting her child in the backseat.

3. Tending to the child

Lastly, 98 percent of the moms surveyed admitted to being preoccupied with their child a third of the time they are on the road. Taking your eyes off the road for any amount of time is very risky behavior. According to NHTSA, a vehicle travelling 55 mph can cover the distance of an entire football field in as little as 4.6 seconds.

We urge all Florida drivers to pay attention behind the wheel. If a distracted driver in Florida has injured you or someone you love, you may need an experienced Florida accident attorney. Call us today at (800) 299-8878 or fill out our convenient online contact form for a free consultation.

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