When you get behind the wheel of a car, your level of attention is crucial. One slip of your mind and you could end up getting involved in a serious crash.
Unfortunately, there are some things that can distract your attention even if you otherwise do as much as you can to stay on task and focused, though. Inattentional blindness serves as one of them.
Identifying inattentional blindness
The American Psychological Association discusses ways in which you can identify inattentional blindness. Inattentional blindness is a natural phenomenon that causes an individual to hyper-focus on one specific task. It happens at the exclusion of any other potential distraction around them.
This could serve as a major boon in the event of needing to focus on a task with crucial importance or consequences. However, it could also serve as a distraction in and of itself that could create the opportunity for accidents.
Obvious problems in drivers
This is very obvious in a car. For example, you could end up focusing on your speed without paying attention to the fact that you are quickly approaching a yellow street light. This could end in you speeding through a red without noticing, leading to a crash.
Inattentional blindness serves as a major danger because it can happen to anyone at any time, without warning, and no matter what one’s level of driving expertise happens to be. It is also impossible to “turn off” inattentional blindness, as it is a natural response that occurs reflexively.
However, drivers can come to know the signs of it, such as intense focus on one specific object, tunnel vision and losing track of what they had done before. This way, they can snap themselves out of it.