You are behind the wheel driving with full concentration and in a matter of seconds, your mood took a swift swing, your attention drifted to that lingering emotion and you subconsciously handed the wheel over to your emotions. In your state of oblivion, you took no notice of the road on which you are traveling until some physical force brought you back to reality in time to save yourself and other road users from what could have been. You have just experienced Emotional Driving Distraction.
The available statistic shows that 45% of accidents are a result of the emotional instability of the driver which makes them suffer from what is termed Emotional Driving Distraction.
According to Wikipedia, emotion is often intertwined with mood, temperament, personality disposition and intense mental activity. Emotion is further defined as a strong agitation of the feelings actuated by experiencing love, hate, fear etc. and usually accompanied by certain physiological changes in the character of a person.
It is important to recognize situations that may have the potential to affect your mood while driving.
Common causes of Emotional Driving Distraction
1) Getting into an argument with your employer or co-workers before getting behind the wheel.
2) Financial worries i.e payday, debt, bank loan, account balance, cash at hand.
3) Relationship disturbance e.g argument with spouse/ partner, break-up, continuous calling and text
4) Death of a close pal or relative.
5) Running late for an appointment or a meeting.
6) Receiving sad news while driving.
Effects of Emotional Driving Distraction
1) Allowing emotions to take over the driving wheel
2) Hitting a pedestrian with your car
3) Driving through a red light or stop sign
4) Drifting from one lane to another without taking the necessary precautions.
5) Not exercising good judgment when making driving decisions.
6) Reduces your ability to quickly spot hazard or respond to danger
All of these could result in loss of life, hospitalized injury, lawsuit or jail sentence, road penalty and fines among others.
How To Handle Emotional Distractions
1) If you experience emotional trauma pull over and take a few minutes to relax and calm your nerves and anxiety.
2) Always remember that you have full control over your own actions.
3) Envision the consequences of reckless driving
4) Listen to music to ease the tension or anxiety
5) Never attempt to settle a dispute while driving either by text or call. Wait till you get to your destination
6) Avoid engaging in aggressive driving and do not allow your emotions do the driving.
7) The best and safest approach is to employ a well trained professional driver to take you to your destination safely.
Contact us @ DGS Chauffeurs and let’s do the driving for you.