GEICO says, 'Distractions are like blindfolds; keep them out of the driver's seat'

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 7, 2017 – If a brain surgeon texted while performing surgery, or a chemist called to get baseball scores while mixing flammable compounds, or a pilot took a selfie while landing a helicopter, what do you think the outcome would be? Not very good would be your first thought.

The same goes for drivers who operate their vehicles while distracted. You just can't expect a good outcome.

To mark Distracted Driving Awareness Month, GEICO wants drivers to stay in the know on distractions behind the wheel, and offers these thoughts on how to do just that.

Are you driving distracted?

My car has voice command technology, and that keeps me from becoming distracted, right?

This isn't always the case. While voice commands help keep your hands on the wheel, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found drivers still took their eyes off the road while using them. Voice commands also can cause the driver to lose focus. If the system makes an error with an address on the GPS for example, it can easily cause drivers to divert their attention, which can lead to a driving error.

Can I do things like texting and putting on makeup while driving because I'm a really good multi-tasker?

Actually, multi-tasking is a big myth; so the answer is no. Our brains rapidly switch between tasks, which can have a significant impact on driving performance.

How can driving distracted blind a driver?

Distractions can cause what researchers call inattention blindness, which could lead to drivers missing objects such as emergency vehicles, road signs and pedestrians as a result of a distraction according to IIHS.

What are the consequences of driving distracted?

Drivers who choose to text behind the wheel or operate a handheld device could potentially face fines according to IIHS. Additionally, drivers' insurance rates could increase if they cause a crash as a result of driving distracted.

Set a Safe Driving Example

Become a part of the solution to distracted driving by leaving distractions out of your daily drives. Keep phones on silent, set GPS destinations before shifting into drive, pull over to eat and take care of your primping needs earlier or later.

If you find yourself riding with a distracted driver, don't be afraid to speak up and voice your concern—sometimes safe driving needs to stretch to the passenger seat, too.

For more safe driving tips, visit the car safety page on the GEICO More content hub.

image of how distractions can blindfold you behind the wheel

GEICO (Government Employees Insurance Company), the second-largest auto insurer in the U.S., was founded in 1936 and insures more than 28 million vehicles in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. A member of the Berkshire Hathaway family of companies, GEICO employs more than 43,000 associates countrywide. GEICO constantly strives to make lives better by protecting people against unexpected events while saving them money and providing an outstanding customer experience. Along with personal auto insurance, commercial auto and personal umbrella coverages are also available. Homeowners, renters, condo, flood, identity theft, term life, and more coverages are written through non-affiliated insurance companies and are secured through the GEICO Insurance Agency, Inc. Visit for a quote or to learn more.