What You Need to Know About Distracted Driving - Baumgartner Law Firm

Last updated: 04-17-2020

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What You Need to Know About Distracted Driving - Baumgartner Law Firm

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention:

* Nine people are killed, and more than 1,000 people are injured in car wrecks that were reported to involve a distracted driver every day in the United States.

* Distractions include taking your eyes off the road; taking your hands off the wheel; and taking your mind off what you are doing.

*75% of U.S. drivers ages 18 to 29 reported that they spoke on their cell phone while driving at least once in the past 30 days, and nearly 40% reported that they talk on their cell phone “regularly” or “fairly often” while driving. For more on teenage driver’s distraction, view our teenage distracted driver infographic.

*52% of U.S. drivers ages 18-29 reported texting or e-mailing while driving at least once in the last 30 days, and more than a quarter report texting or e-mailing “regularly” or “fairly often” while driving.

* Distracted driving is the leading cause of accidents in the United States.

Distracted driving is defined as driving while your attention is diverted away from driving. There are three main distractions for drivers; they are:

Visual distractions are the easiest to understand, and they are activities that divert your eyes off of the road and onto something else. Such as looking at a text or even interacting with another passenger.

Manual distractions involve taking your hands off the wheel to tend to other activities such as eating or drinking or adjusting the radio.

Cognitive distractions can be things like daydreaming or taking your mind off driving.

Many sources can lead to distracted driving.

From adjusting the radio, inputting an address into a GPS, turning to speak to a passenger or to tend to a child all can lead to a severe accident if you are not careful.

The problem of distracted driving is significant and has increased in the last 15 years with technology. Today our society is one that is “connected” and has increased the number of car accidents because of distractions related to distracted driving.

Last year alone, almost 20% of the injury accidents are from distracted driving. To give you an idea of how connected our society is, more than 200 billion text messages are exchanged in the United States each month!

Most Americans are aware of how dangerous driving can be while behind the wheels of the vehicle. The problem is so prevalent that numerous ad campaigns speak on the potentially hazardous environment that is created by drunk driving.

However, what many may not be aware of is that distracted driving can often be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Any activity that pulls one’s attention away from the road, such as:

Studies have shown that younger drivers under the age of 20 are at an increased risk of accidents by distraction and also have the highest percentage of distracted-related fatal accidents.

Please watch where you are going – you may not get a second chance to make the unfortunate decision to drive distracted.

It stands to reason that the group that is most at risk, according to the National Traffic Safety Administration, is drivers that are under 25 years of age. This group is 3% as more likely than older, established drivers, to text while driving.

This can largely be attributed to the type of interconnected mentality that has developed, which is primarily based on the usage of technology. Younger drivers want to access smartphones to send text messages, listen to music, or log onto social media sites – all while behind the wheel of a vehicle. In fact, according to the research, while 95% of drivers over the age of 45 felt that text was “very unsafe” while driving, only 60% of drivers that were within the ages to 18-20 age bracket thought that it was not okay to send a text while driving.

I pledge to Just Drive for my safety and for others with whom I share the roads. I choose not to drive distracted in any way – I will not:

It stands to reason that the group that is most at risk, according to the National Traffic Safety Administration, is drivers that are under 25 years of age. This group is 3% as more likely than older, established drivers, to text while driving. Almost 3500 teen drivers were killed last year in auto accidents. If you have been in an accident with a texting driver, speak with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible.

Wired life is related to the type of interconnected mentality that has developed, which is primarily based on the usage of technology. Younger drivers want to access smartphones to send text messages, listen to music, or log onto social media sites – all while behind the wheel of a vehicle. In fact, according to the research, while 95% of drivers over the age of 45 felt that text was “very unsafe” while driving, only 60% of drivers that were within the ages to 18-20 age bracket thought that it was not okay to send a text while driving.

Hundreds of BILLIONS of texts are sent per month in the United States alone. With the mass amount of communication and the potential for other distraction-related activities, it is understandable that many drivers may feel that tearing their eyes away from the road, even briefly, is an acceptable practice.

However, as the research points out, five seconds is the typical amount of time that one takes their eyes off the road when engaging in a distraction-based activity, such as sending a text message. While this may not seem like a long time, this is the equivalent of covering one football length while driving at 55 mph.

In short, distracted driving is simply not worth it, and many of these activities, such as talking on the phone or text messaging, can simply be put on hold until you arrive at your destination.

Americans are aware of how dangerous driving drunk can be while behind the wheels of the vehicle. The problem is so prevalent that numerous ad campaigns speak on the potentially hazardous environment that is created by drunk driving.

However, what many may not be aware of is that distracted driving can often be just as dangerous as drunk driving. While drunk drivers tend to be unable to react timely or make good decisions, taking your eyes off the road can put you in as dangerous a position.

There are also many ways one can prevent distracted driving, such as:

As mentioned, above all else, one should cut back on any activity, no matter how minor, that distracts them from the road!

Although distracting driving is impossible to prevent completely, there is a great deal one can do to limit them. In doing so, one also ensures that they can then focus on the road and prevent potential accidents from occurring.

Put your phone down- it really can wait!


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