Many people take drinks and food with them in their vehicles. After all, there are cup holders specifically there to hold something to drink, and you may have storage areas for snacks, too.
While it’s not illegal to eat or drink in your vehicle, it’s important that you remember that doing so is a distraction. If you’re not parked, you’re taking at least one of your hands off the wheel to grab your water, coffee or other beverage or snack. You’re also assuming that nothing will happen in the few seconds that you look away from the road to pick something up or unwrap something to eat. If it does, you’ll have less time to react and less control over your vehicle.
Eating and driving is a hazard
Besides the risk of crashing due to looking away from the road or losing control because of not having both hands on the wheel, there is a risk that you could have a medical emergency due to choking while you eat. Even if you just have a coughing fit, that’s a major distraction that could lead to you jerking your wheel and moving into another lane or off the road.
For this and other reasons, it’s a better idea not to eat, drink and drive.
What can you do to avoid distractions from eating and driving?
The smartest way to address this issue is by pulling over to the side of the road to eat, eating and drinking at rest stops or waiting until you get to your destination before eating or drinking. It may not always seem convenient, but taking just a few minutes of time to eat while you sit in a restaurant or in a parking lot is unlikely to make you arrive much later if you keep an eye on the time. On top of that, you will be better able to focus while you drive, so you can avoid crashes caused by other people who make mistakes on the road.
If you do get into a car crash with someone who was eating or drinking despite taking steps not to do so yourself, then you should make a claim. It’s every driver’s responsibility to avoid distractions that could negatively impact their driving.