As mobile technology becomes more readily available for drivers, the risk
of crashes caused by distracted driving increases; in fact, the National
Highway Safety Administration reports between 60-70% of all crashes in
the United States are caused by distracted drivers. While awareness of
the dangers of distracted driving has also increased, mobile technology
changes so quickly it is at times difficult for organizations committed
to protecting drivers and promoting safety to get the word out on road
safety. In this blog, our Columbia
personal injury attorney discusses what distracted driving us and tips you can use to
prevent yourself from driving distracted.
What is Distracted Driving?
The National Highway Safety Administration states distracted driving is
defined as anything other than driving behind the wheel. This can include:
- Using navigation devices
- Even experiencing extreme emotions.
Three Types of Distraction
The Center for Disease Control reports there are three types of distraction:
1.Visual: taking your eyes off the road
2.Manual: taking your hands off the wheel
3.Cognitive: taking your mind off driving
While any activity that takes a driver’s focus from the road is unsafe,
texting while driving is the most dangerous form of distracted driving
because it involves all three types of distraction. Drivers who text in
their vehicle must look at their phones to read a message, remove their
hands from the wheel to respond, and concentrate on typing, all of which
limits awareness of their surroundings including other drivers, traffic
signals, and pedestrians. It only takes about 2.5 seconds to read a text
message, but during this brief time, the chance of experiencing an accident
almost doubles because a driver’s ability to respond to a dangerous
situation is limited.
Distracted Driving Safety Tips
Currently, the only driving distracted driving prevention laws in effect
are those that prohibit drivers under the age of 21 from texting. But
Missouri drivers can still proactively discourage distracted driving.
Here are a few driving safety tips from our personal injury lawyers.
Never text while driving. Even if you are stopped at a red light or a stop sign and begin texting,
this is still considered texting while driving. Place your phone inside
your purse or in the back seat if it causes a temptation.
Make all calls or send texts before entering the vehicle. Let others know you will be driving and will respond to them once you’ve
reached your destination.
- Use a designated texter. If you have someone riding with you, have your
passenger send your messages.
- Be a good role model. Remember that your actions can influence others,
including children and other drivers. Part of preventing distracted driving
is being the driver you want to encounter on the road
Injured in a Distracted Driving Accident?
If you were recently injured by a negligent, distracted driver, you may
be eligible to recover compensation for your injuries, medical bills and
wages lost. Contact one of our skilled
Columbia personal injury attorneys for a free case evaluation today.
Ready to file your
personal injury claim?—Call our offices today!