With the holiday season upon us, we are all trying to do more in less time. Seventy percent of people surveyed admit to eating while driving. The temptation is great to grab your coffee and breakfast burrito to eat on the way to those early morning sales at the mall, but doing so could jeopardize your life.
A 2016 USA Today report found that eating while your drive significantly increases your risk of being involved in an automobile collision. The increased danger is almost as great as that caused by texting while driving! Any activity that results in taking your eyes off the road for three seconds is distracted driving. Three seconds. That’s a very short amount of time.
In addition to the risk involved in taking your eyes off the road to get out and unwrap your food, eating behind the wheel reduces your ability to react to an emergency situation. When the car in front of you suddenly stops, your brain is caught between the need to stop quickly and the instinctive reaction to protect your lap from the hot coffee you are holding. In addition, there is always the possibility of choking on a bite of food or jerking from an unexpectedly hot drink, which could result in a dangerous situation.
While we all feel the need to multi-task, do so wisely. Take the time to pull off the road to eat. Don’t let unwrapping your burger, looking in the bag for that elusive ketchup, or opening a straw make this your last meal.