There are many distractions for drivers today. Everything from complex driver assistance technology and cell phones to the old-fashioned radio and fast food can cause distractions that lead to serious motor vehicle accidents.
One distraction that does not get a lot of press is the presence of dogs in vehicles. For most American dog owners, our dogs are beloved, a very real part of our families. However, dogs can cause dangerous distractions in cars.
How common are dog distractions in cars?
Canine driving distractions are probably more prevalent than you think. According an independent analysis shared by Geico insurance, 84 percent of people surveyed admitted to driving with their dogs in the car. That is more than 3/4 of all drivers who responded to the survey driving with their dogs in the car.
Even more interesting is the fact that only 17 percent of those people did anything to restrain their dogs to keep them from wandering freely in the car and causing dangerous distractions.
Based on these numbers, it is probably that many readers are nodding their heads sheepishly, because apparently, most of us ride with unrestrained dogs in our vehicles.
What does this mean for you?
This means two things for you as a driver. First, you should make sure to have a kennel or something that will safely restrain your dog when driving. A dog jumping in the car or moving on your lap could cause a serious accident.
Second, if you have been in an accident, one thing to consider is whether the other driver had an unrestrained dog in the car. If so, it could be powerful evidence to show that the other driver’s distractions caused the accident. This could mean a good compensation award for you.