Distracted Driving from Unrestrained Pets

With summer upon us, many of us are embarking on summer road trips and many of us will be taking along man’s best friend. Driving while being distracted by your pet is a very real threat to public safety, 30 % of people have admitted to being distracted by their pets while driving. In my personal experience, my mother and I were on vacation in Cambria, CA in 2005, while I was home from school for Christmas vacation. We were crossing the street at a corner in a crosswalk when a woman driving with a dog in her lap very nearly ran us over. It was one of the scariest experiences I have ever had in my life, my mom and I still talk about it. I personally didn’t even get my drivers license until I was in my mid to late '20s, but since adopting my dog nearly 6 years ago and purchasing my first vehicle this experience has stuck with me. While doing research for this blog I have found that 90% of pet owners admit to driving in their vehicle with their pet and that 98% of those people have admitted to doing so without first properly restraining their furkid. At 35 mph a 60-pound dog can become a 2,700-pound projectile. In an auto accident, the impact of an unrestrained pet can kill both the dog and the car’s human occupants, as well as cause massive damage to the vehicle and its components. Unrestrained pets can escape from the vehicle causing other accidents, and can even impede a first responders’ access to any injured human occupants. Proper pet restraint in a vehicle is very important to not only the safety of the pet but to the human occupants of the vehicle. Small pets should ride in well-ventilated crates or in travel safe dog beds; that is properly attached to the car’s safety restraints. While large breed dogs need to be harnessed and linked to safety belts or placed in well-ventilated and secured crates in the cargo area of larger vehicles. There are many companies that make pet safety harnesses, seat belts, and other amazing products. Do your homework and find what solutions work best for you and your vehicle. All of us here at Westside Transmission & Automotive, Inc wish you a happy and safe summer.

Check back next week for my next post about Repairs You Should Never Skip.

Bye for now.

Laura @ Westside Transmission & Automotive, Inc.