Distracted driving imperils safety, low auto insurance rates

Even if texting while driving gets considerable attention from the media, eating behind the wheel can be just as dangerous.

The ongoing national conversation about distracted driving neglects one important point - that there are a number of other unsafe activities people can do behind the wheel that put them at risk for accidents and higher auto insurance rates.

Among these hazards is eating, which millions of Americans do on any given day, often without a second thought.

With that in mind, a recent Boston Globe article highlighted the dangers of eating and drinking coffee while driving. Even things like daydreaming and tending to personal hygiene are reportedly responsible for more accidents then they should be.

The newspaper quoted a 19-year-old college student who acknowledged eating pizza behind the wheel, sometimes while also operating a cell phone. "You can manage it," she was quoted as saying.

While texting behind the wheel is becoming illegal in more and more states, the matter of avoiding distracted driving will not be settled even when and if a nationwide ban is enacted. Given the high auto insurance costs and safety risks distracted driving of any kind can raise, it's always advisable to just pay attention.

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Posted: Octobor 14, 2009

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