Safety should be your top priority when you get behind the wheel of a car. It may not always seem like it, but there are various pitfalls on the road that could endanger your life. Reckless drivers, inclement weather conditions, vehicle malfunctions and road hazards all contribute to the significant number of car accidents that occur every daily. The most dangerous threat, however, is the growing issue of distracted driving.

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents every year. Any activity that takes drivers’ attention off the road falls under the umbrella of distracted driving. Attempting to perform even the most rudimentary task while driving can exponentially increase the chance of getting into a crash. Fortunately, this is a problem that you have the power to prevent by practicing safe driving habits.

Leave your cell phone alone

The most notable distraction that impacts drivers around the country is the cell phone. It has become the poster child for distracted driving. Cell phones can perform a variety of helpful functions that are essential to your daily routine. In the context of distracted driving, however, your cell phone is a death trap that can fit into your pocket.

When you hop into your car, place your cell phone in a safe place and leave it there for the duration of your trip. This simple decision will effectively eliminate potentially the most significant threat to your safety on the road.

Do not drive emotionally

Have you ever gotten into an argument and decided to go for a drive to cool off? This may sound like a good idea in theory, but driving when your emotions have escalated can put you in danger. Studies have shown that driving while you are observably angry or sad can dramatically increase the likelihood of getting into an accident.

When you drive emotionally, your mind is not focused on what is going on around you. This may make it difficult to concentrate and reduce your reaction speed. If possible, try to focus on the situation at hand or postpone your trip until you can confidently focus on the road.

Avoid multitasking

Most people view driving as a simple and routine activity. This often leads drivers to perform other basic tasks while on the road to their destination. Actions such as finishing your lunch and searching for a radio station may seem straightforward, but they can affect your reaction speed.

Putting a conscious effort into multiple activities at the same time puts a strain on your brain. Naturally, this increases the potential for error and reduces your ability to process something expected. Fight the urge to perform other tasks while driving to ensure that you reach your destination safely.