A Maine driver swerves, hits a school bus, and causes injury. What causes this kind of crash? While waiting for the investigation to be finished, it helps to know the categories on the standard Maine Crash Report that deal with driver distraction.
According to the State of Maine Traffic Crash Reporting Manual, published by the Maine Department of Public Safety (Maine State Police Traffic Safety Unit) the leading causes of distraction are electronic 1.Communication devices (cell phones, pagers, etc); 2. Navigation devices, Palm Pilot, entertainment devices, radios and mobile data terminals, etc; 3. Things happening Inside the vehicle (Eating, Reading, Grooming, Smoking, Passengers, etc.); and 4. External Distraction (outside the vehicle) Any person, object, or event outside the vehicle that draws the operators attention (traffic crash in other lane, highway signs, pedestrians, etc).
While none of the children were hurt enough to be hospitalized, the bus crash brings home the importance of minimizing distractions when school buses are out on the road. The number one thing to avoid distraction that leads to a crash is: turn off devices. Also, restrain pets, and don’t multi-task while driving by trying to eat a meal, discipline children or key in a destination to the nav system.
(Thanks to WGME for reporting this Monday, 4/4/11/22 crash. (Photo by Lewis Harry Elliot via WVII))
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