Distracted driving is a problem that has reached epidemic levels in the United States. In today’s interconnected, on-the-go world, it is no surprise that behind-the-wheel distraction is one of the leading causes of preventable auto collisions in Fort Lauderdale and throughout the country.
“Distracted driving” describes any time a driver pays attention to something other than safe driving practices.
Common distractions while driving include:
- Texting or emailing
- Talking on a cell phone
- Looking at GPS devices or reading maps
- Eating and drinking
- Listening to overly loud music
- Using car infotainment systems
- Reaching for an object
Distractions generally fall into one or more of three categories:
- Visual distractions
- This includes things that cause drivers’ eyes to wander off the road. This could include turning to look at a roadside accident or police presence (commonly called “rubbernecking”), scenery, or looking at a phone.
- Manual distractions
- This includes anything that requires a driver to take his or her hands off the wheel. This may include fiddling with a stereo, typing a text message, or rummaging through the car or a purse.
- Cognitive distraction
- This describes a driver’s mind wandering from the task at hand. A driver headed home after a stressful day at the office may be mulling over the day’s events and lose track of what is around him or her. Carrying on a conversation while driving can sometimes be distracting as well.
Victims of distracted driving accidents are encouraged to get in touch with a Fort Lauderdale distracted driving accident lawyer at Kelley | Uustal. We have more than 325 years of combined experience handling auto accident cases and know what it takes to maximize the value of a claim.
Texting and Driving
One of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving is texting while driving. Since smartphones hit the mainstream market, text messaging exploded as many Americans’ preferred method of quick communication. However, texting behind the wheel is one of the deadliest hazards on the road. Texting is essentially all three types of distraction rolled into one; drivers must use a hand to operate the phone, their eyes to read the message and type a response, and their attention is on the device, not the road ahead. At high speeds, taking your eyes off the road for even a few seconds could mean essentially driving blind for quite a distance causing you to merge into another lane and causing a serious traffic accident.
Distracted Driving Statistics
Distracted driving is any activity which diverts a driver’s attention away from the road. Even a momentary lapse of attention endangers the driver, their passengers, other motorists, bicyclists, and nearby pedestrians.
Here are some alarming statistics on distracted driving:
- Texting and driving results in 330,000 injuries each year (National Safety Council)
- Distracted driving results in approximately 5,000 deaths per year (AAA)
- One out of every four U.S. car accidents is caused by texting while driving (National Safety Council)
- Eight people are killed every day in the U.S. in accidents caused by distracted drivers (CDC)
- Using a handheld phone while driving increases a driver’s crash risk three times (Virginia Tech Transportation Institute)
- Teen drivers are typically distracted almost a quarter of the time they are behind the wheel (AAA)
Request a Free Review of Your Case
You should not have to suffer the financial consequences of an accident caused by someone who wasn’t paying attention to the road. Kelley | Uustal stands ready to help you pursue justice so that you can move forward from this traumatic experience. We are well known as aggressive advocates who fight for maximum compensation in every personal injury case we handle.
Call our Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyers at (954) 522-6601 to get started.