While most mothers believe they are safe drivers, a recent survey shows that new moms are among the most distracted drivers on the road.
The survey conducted by Safe Kids Worldwide and American Baby Magazine found that the majority of new moms partake in risky driving behaviors that may endanger their children and increase their risk of serious injury in a Spring Hill collision.
Of the 2,396 mothers with children under the age of two surveyed, nearly two-thirds of mothers claimed to have become more cautious and alert drivers. However, most of the new moms said they had engaged in risky driving behaviors while behind the wheel.
In fact, the study found that the majority of new moms are driving drowsy and distracted. With an average of 5 hours and 20 minutes of sleep per night, the mothers surveyed admitted to driving fatigued, not paying attention to the speed limit, talking and texting on their phone and doing other kinds of distracted behavior while towing their baby around town.
• 78 percent of new moms admitted to talking on the phone while driving with their babies
• 58 percent of moms said they drove above the speed limit with their baby in the car
• 26 percent of mothers confessed to texting and checking their email while driving with children in the car
• 67 percent of mothers said they turned around to deal with a crying baby in the back seat while driving
Perhaps the most shocking is that 10 percent of new mothers surveyed had been in an accident with their baby. This accident rate is nearly three times higher than the rate for the general population, and extremely close to the accident rate for new teen drivers.
Distracted driving is a factor in 80 percent of car accidents annually throughout the country. The Hernando County Auto Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton recommend the following tips to help new moms avoid dangerous driving behaviors:
• Give the road your full attention, and stop multi-tasking. Driving is a high-risk job, so when you are behind the wheel, focus all of your attention on getting from Point A to Point B safely.
• Cell phones, tablets and iPods create distractions. If you cannot keep yourself from checking your phone or other electronic devices while you are in the car, then shut them off and stow them in the back seat.
• New moms do not always get enough sleep, so if you are overly exhausted try and refrain from driving. Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, so keep that in mind when you are having an especially tiring day.
• Always focus on the road. Even if your child is demanding attention, do not turn around. Find a safe place to pull over, and then attend to your baby’s needs.
• No matter where you are driving to, always buckle up. With that said, make sure your child is in an appropriate car seat and is restrained properly.
If you or your child has been injured in a Spring Hill car wreck, a Hernando County Auto Accident Lawyer at Whittel & Melton can help you determine if you may be entitled to receive compensation for your pain and suffering. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today online or call our office at 352-666-2121.