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Guidebook Analysis (Grade 10)

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Guidebook Analysis

Safe driving involves more than learning the basics of operating a vehicle and memorizing the rules of the road. Safe driving also requires good judgment and reflexes, experience, patience, and common sense.

A young driver’s understanding and judgment may not be as well developed as an experienced driver’s. Middle-aged drivers may grow complacent about their driving ability after years of driving. Older drivers have years of experience on the road, but may face challenges brought about by losses in vision, hearing, attentiveness, decision-making ability, or reaction time. Research indicates older drivers can improve their driving ability through additional training, enabling them to maintain their driver’s
license while driving safely. Some communities offer driving skill programs for older drivers.

Distracted Driving
Research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration suggests that distracted driving plays a significant role in traffic crashes. In 2009, 5,474 people were killed (16 percent of total fatalities) and an estimated 448,000 people were injured (20 percent of total injuries) in crashes in which distracted driving is believed to have played a role.

While these numbers are significant, they may understate the size of the problem since identifying the distraction and its role in a crash can be difficult.

Most drivers understand the responsibility of getting behind the wheel and avoiding risky behaviors. Distracted drivers who drive “in a careless or negligent manner likely to endanger any person or property” or “in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property” are subject to prosecution under Michigan law.

Texting while driving is illegal in Michigan and this includes reading, typing, or sending a text message. Exceptions are in place for reporting crashes, crimes, or other emergencies. Drivers face a fine of $100 for a first offense and $200 for subsequent
violations. No points are assessed and convictions are not posted to a person’s driving record.

Anything that takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the wheel, or your mind off your driving can be a big problem. Studies show that your brain cannot give full attention to more than one activity at a time. Even seemingly simple tasks such as
tuning a radio can be risky, especially in bad weather or heavy traffic. In the estimated quarter of a second it takes the brain to shift attention between two tasks, a car going 65 mph covers 24 feet.

Here are some ways you can minimize in-vehicle distractions:

Before driving:
Designate a front-seat passenger to serve as a “co-pilot,” rather than fumble with maps or navigation systems. If you are driving alone, map out destinations in advance.

Be familiar with equipment in the vehicle. Practice performing basic functions such as adjusting the temperature or radio settings without taking your eyes
off the road.

Preprogram your favorite radio stations for easy access and arrange tapes and CDs in an easy-to-reach spot.

Ensure all children are comfortable and properly buckled up. Teach them the importance of good behavior and remaining buckled up while in a vehicle. Do not
underestimate how distracting it can be to tend to them in the car.

Complete any personal grooming before you start driving or after you reach your destination.

While driving:

Give priority to the task of driving. A momentary distraction can lead to a crash. Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road.

Avoid using cell phones, texting devices, navigation systems, and other electronic gadgets.

If you must use a cell phone, the best practice is to make your call while your vehicle is safely parked.

Do not take notes, read, or look up phone numbers.

Avoid involved, stressful, or confrontational conversations.

If you can’t avoid eating, choose easy-to-handle items and make sure all drinks are secured in cup holders.

Take a break if you find yourself “lost in thought” or tired.
It is best to avoid eating while driving.
  1. True
  2. False
How does the author enhance the discussion on distracted driving?
  1. By citing a national study on distracted driving
  2. By pointing out instances of distracted driving
  3. By incorporating stories from actual teen drivers
  4. By loading the passage with personal opinion
Each group of drivers has its own unique set of challenges.
  1. True
  2. False
What does safe driving entail?
  1. Learning the basics of operating a vehicle.
  2. Memorizing the rules of the road.
  3. Developing good judgement, reflexes, and experience.
  4. All of the above
Why can something as simple as fiddling with a radio be risky?
  1. Because it can take longer than expected
  2. Because it involves looking down
  3. Because the mind can only focus on one thing at a time
  4. Because the radio can be too loud and distracting
What is the main idea of the passage?

Which is NOT something you can do before driving to keep from being distracted?
  1. Avoid involved, stressful, or confrontational conversations.
  2. Complete any personal grooming before you start driving or after you reach your destination.
  3. Preprogram your favorite radio stations or load any CDs beforehand.
  4. Be familiar with the equipment in the vehicle.
Which is NOT something you can do to avoid distracted driving while driving?
  1. Finish any personal grooming using the rear-view mirror.
  2. Avoid fiddling with the radio.
  3. Keep food in easy-to-hold containers.
  4. Have someone act as a co-pilot and help navigate.
This passage was most likely written for drivers...
  1. in Michigan
  2. who are teenagers
  3. with a history of good driving
  4. in Ohio
What is distracted driving?

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