Staying Focused While Driving

If you're having trouble staying focused while driving, you should prepare for your trip before you leave, put away your phone, drink caffeine, take breaks, and keep kids occupied. Reading through our list of focused driving tips will help you stay safe on the road and avoid having to make an auto insurance claim after a lapse in focus while driving.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insurance...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years

UPDATED: Nov 12, 2020

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According to AAA, distracted driving is responsible for around 8,000 accidents per day in the United States.  The United States Department of Transportation even says that distracted driving caused at least 5,500 deaths and nearly 450,000 injures in 2009.

Lucky for us, combating distracted driving is simple.  The opposite of “distracted” is “focused,” so in order to stop being “distracted drivers,” we need to start being “focused drivers.”  Follow these five tips below improve your focus on the road and to stay safe.

You need to stay alert while driving if you want to stay safe on the road. Read below for our five suggestions on how to keep your focus. (Image: Flickr)

1) Be Prepared For Your Trip

Before you take off, you should eat, use the bathroom, apply makeup or shave, send all your texts, and make all the phone calls you need to make.  When driving, you need to make sure that the only thing you need to do at that time is drive.  This means that you should also read the maps you need to and memorize (or at least be familiar with) your route.  Constantly glancing down at a map while you are driving can be very dangerous.

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2) Put Your Mobile Phone Away

It’s very important for some people to have their phone on them at all times of the day.  Being away from their cellphone for even a minute is torture for some people.  We aren’t saying that you should leave your phone at home (or even turn it off while you are driving).  Having a working mobile phone with you is actually very important if you get into an accident (or have an emergency on the road).  If you want to stay as safe as possible while driving, however, you need to refrain from cellphone use at all times.  Driving with one hand on the wheel and the other hand on your phone is a recipe for disaster!

3) Drink Coffee

Studies have shown that caffeine has a positive effect on your driving skills.  A recent survey by InsurancePanda.com shows that drinking 2-3 cups of coffee per day is the safest way to stay focused on the road.  If coffee isn’t your thing, try a caffeine substitute like tea, soda, or even caffeine pills.  (As if I needed another reason to drink coffee!)

4) Take Breaks (or naps)

Although stimulants like caffeine can replace rest for a lot of people, they still aren’t as good as the real thing.  It’s important to pull over and regroup if anything is bothering you while you are driving.  This includes, but not limited to – fatigue, need to use the bathroom, muscle cramps, hunger, etc.  Taking regular breaks are important for maintaining focus, especially during long, monotonous driving.

As Americans, we are lucky.  Fast food stops, gas stations, hotels, and rest areas are easy to find along any stretch of roadway. In fact, you can’t even drive more than twenty minutes without running into one.  If you need a break, take it!

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5) Keep Your Children At Bay

Loud children can make any drive a nightmare.  To keep them from crying, whining, or throwing things at your face while you are driving, make sure you have enough things in your car to keep them occupied.  Books, CD’s, DVD’s, and video games are all good things to give to your children to keep them quiet.  You should also make sure you have enough snacks and drinks in the car to keep your children well-fed and content.

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