VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Things that you do in the car that seem second nature, like tuning in a radio station or looking out at the scenery while your driving, can put you and your family at risk.
“Distracted driving is any thing that takes your attention away from the road,” said Virginia Beach Police Master Police Officer Linda Kuehn.
Kuehn says the one everyone talks about the most is texting and driving.
“It is a primary offense if you’re seen by an officer you can get pulled over for texting and driving using your cellular device other than talking on the phone,” Kuehn said.
Virginia Beach police records show that in 2018, there were 66 traffic summons written for texting and driving.
“First offense is $125 fine, second and subsequent offenses, $250 fine,” she said.
Kuehn says while they can’t ticket you for applying makeup or eating, if what you’re doing makes you swerve into other lanes, then you can get issued a summons
“You’re now reckless driving and you can be issued a summons for that and reckless driving is a class one misdemeanor,” said Kuehn.
Suffolk Police sent us a breakdown of distractions that caused traffic accidents in 2018.
In total there were around 400 accidents caused by distracted drivers.
The top distractions were eyes not on the road, driver fatigue, cell phones, and looking at a roadside incident. Daydreaming and adjusting vehicle controls also show up on the list.
“People do it every single day and nothing happens, so they continue to think they’re good at multi tasking until the one time you can’t, the one time you can’t, it will change your life and somebody else’s life forever. it can turn fatal,” she said.
Kuehn says the best thing to do is to remind yourself to stay focused on the road, and when it comes to using your cell phones, silence them and don’t touch them while driving.