Study Finds Motorists at High Risk of Distraction from Pets

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Pets are an integral part of the American family, and it's very common to see motorists driving with their furry companions. In many cases, the canine head is hanging out the window, enjoying the breeze. However, having a pet unrestrained in a car like this is not just inadvisable, but also dangerous. Those dangers involve the pet and other occupants of the car.

According to a recent study that was conducted by the AAA and a pet products company, far too many American motorists drive with their animals in the car, without bothering to restrain them properly. The survey specifically asked these motorists how often they travel with their pets. The survey indicated that an overwhelming majority of motorists enjoy driving with their pet in the car, and also often allow pets to ride unrestrained. At least 6 out of 10 respondents admitted that they have traveled with their dog in the car at least once a month, over the past year alone.

Most also admitted that the pets were a huge distraction for them in the car. 54% admitted that they frequently petted their pet while driving, and 23% have taken their hands off the steering wheel to hold the pet in place while applying brakes. 19% have also used their hands to prevent the dog from climbing into the front seat while driving. In all these situations, there is a serious risk of an accident caused by distractions. Distractions don't only have to involve electronic communication devices. It can be very distracting when you're trying to keep Fido in his place.

Always make sure that your pet is safely restrained in a pet carrier while driving. Failure to do so can actually endanger you and Fido.


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