With the constant use of cellphones in our daily lives, it’s hard to unplug. From texting to switching music to looking up directions, it seems we constantly have them in hand. That’s why it’s tempting to pick up your phone while driving. But this is extremely dangerous and can lead to distracted-driving accidents.
Indeed, cellphone use is a leading cause of such incidents. If you’re traveling at 55 mph, in the five seconds it takes to read a text, you cover the length of a football field. No matter where you’re driving, a lot can happen in that amount of time and over that distance, from veering out of lane to not spotting someone else who is — or any variety of treacherous circumstances. But mobile phones are far from the only things that can divert your attention while behind the wheel.
Causes of Distracted-Driving Accidents
- GPS: Global positioning systems are ubiquitous in vehicles, and ride-sharing drivers use them constantly. They are a major source of extended distraction.
- Loose pets: Animals should never be allowed to run around loose in a vehicle. They can divert attention or even get in the way of controls like brake pedals.
- Adjusting music: Flipping stations to change tunes can distract you even if you’re keeping your eyes on the road.
- Losing focus: Whether you’re rubbernecking at an accident scene or taking in the views on a sightseeing adventure, you are not paying attention to the task at hand.
- Talking: It’s nice to chat while on the road, but in-depth conversations can take your mind off driving.
- Makeup: Many people apply makeup behind the wheel, which needless to say is a major distraction.
- Daydreaming: A surprisingly common cause of distracted-driving accidents is not due to external factors; zoning out often leads to dangerous situations.
- Children: From as little as responding to “Are we there yet?” to turning backwards to care for children, kids can be a major distraction.
The Deadly Truth
The cost of distracted driving can be high. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,166 people died in 2017 as a result of drivers’ having their attention diverted, accounting for 9% of fatal crashes that year. Of those fatalities, 599 were nonoccupants, meaning such people as pedestrians, bicyclists, and skateboarders.
Hiring a Distracted-Driving Accident Lawyer
Being injured by a distracted driver can have long-lasting physical, emotional and financial consequences. You may have extensive medical bills, lost wages, and loss of quality of life due to pain and suffering. Many times, insurance companies don’t want to hold up their end of the bargain and pay you the funds you deserve. An experienced distracted-driving accident attorney can do the research legwork, fight for compensation, and leave you to the most important task — getting better. Morgan & Morgan does not charge any upfront fees, and we get paid only if we win. Fill out a free case evaluation today.