Many times when I’m done with work and my boyfriend gets home from work, we’ll head out for a drive. At some point, he’ll want to stop at a fast food restaurant- and because he hates eating inside of fast food places (I don’t know why), we’ll end up going through the drive-thru and eating in my car (which I hate, and he knows it). If we are taking my car and I wind up getting something from the fast food place as well, I will always have to find a place to park so that I can eat. You see, unlike a lot of other drivers out there, I can’t really eat and drive very effectively. You would think that I would be upset about this, but I am not- quite the contrary.
I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen eating and driving to the point where I was almost sure that if they hadn’t been in an accident in the past, they were certainly on their way to one. I’ll never forget this time when I was driving to work a couple of years back and I saw this man eating some sort of fast food meal. He had his french fries up on the dashboard in front of his steering wheel with one of those little ketchup condiment containers. Then, in his hands, he had this humongous burger that required both of his hands in order to eat, and he was definitely using both of his hands to eat it, which then made me wonder who was driving the car. That’s when I noticed that he was using the top of his knee/thigh area to guide the steering wheel. Needless to say, I sped on ahead definitely NOT wanting to be next to this guy.
Unless you have some magical powers that allow you to feed yourself without the use of your hands, when you are driving, both hands should ALWAYS be on the wheel at all times. Think about how you would react if you needed to swerve your car out of danger’s way suddenly. Now think about doing it with a Big Mac and/or a soft drink in your hands. While drive-thrus are convenient, it doesn’t necessarily mean that their intention is to have you eat while you drive. On the contrary, I think the point is so that you won’t have to get out of your car, thereby saving you time by simply buying the food at the drive-thru window. When I go to a drive-thru, I grab the food and head to the nearest parking spot, or I simply head home.
I opt not to eat and drive because I know that it makes me a less effective driver because it takes my attention away from the road. Think about it. Even something as simple as opening the wrapper on a candy bar usually requires you to glance down at it. And even if you think you’re a ‘pro’ and don’t need to look at something to open it while you are driving, your brain is still actively engaged in thinking about it, which is in and of itself distracting you from what you should be focusing on.