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How does inattentional blindness increase car accident risk?

On Behalf of | May 4, 2022 | Car Accidents |

Many modern vehicles come with dozens of safety features, including collision avoidance systems. These systems use cameras and sensors to alert drivers to accident risks before collisions occur. Still, most vehicles on the road today do not have them.

Unless and until all cars become capable of driving themselves safely, drivers need to watch for oncoming traffic. After all, pulling into fast-approaching vehicles may lead to a catastrophic accident. Regrettably, though, a driver’s eyes and brain may play tricks on him or her.

Not seeing clearly visible objects

According to Psychology Today, inattentional blindness is a well-documented and common phenomenon. This phenomenon occurs when someone fails to see something that is clearly visible because he or she is focusing on something else. Therefore, it is possible for a driver to pull in front of a visible vehicle even if he or she is looking directly at it.

Paying close attention to the driving task

Because driving a vehicle is relatively simple, drivers often do not devote enough mental attention to the task. They also may engage in distracting behaviors behind the wheel. Still, to avoid inattentional blindness, it is imperative for motorists to pay full attention to driving safely.

That does not always happen, of course. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, distracted driving plays a role in roughly 20% of all fatal car accidents. It is also likely to blame for countless other injury-causing ones.

So do your part to avoid serious injury – drive carefully, stay focused, and watch out for distracted drivers.