Long ago, very few people owned cars. Oklahoma residents and others traveled by different means, including horseback, boat or on foot. You probably can barely imagine living that way nowadays, as the majority of people travel by car. If you live and drive in a high traffic area, you may be keenly aware of the problems distracted drivers cause. When you share the road with someone who is preoccupied in their thoughts or otherwise distracted behind the wheel, your life and all other drivers nearby are at risk.
You've probably seen it more than a time or two on Oklahoma highways: a driver looking down at a hand-held device and typing with thumbs behind the wheel in moving traffic. Hopefully, you avoid such behavior while driving and do your best to remain alert and cautious of any distracted driver who may be in your vicinity. Just because you recognize the signs of distracted driving, however, doesn't mean you'll be able to avoid a collision.
Distracted driving is a serious problem in the U.S. In due response to rising numbers of distracted driving accidents, technology is being developed to prevent people from texting and driving, and in 2015 Oklahoma banned texting while driving for all drivers.
Every year is a competition to beat last year's new vehicle technology. Vehicle makers show off their new model's latest features such as touch-screens and voice-activated technology. Fun and sometimes frustrating, these features could actually be the cause of increasing roadway accidents.
As last week's blog discussed, distracted driving is a serious concern which can lead to car accidents. As a society, we are improving our understanding of what distracted driving is and the dangerous impact it can have. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics reveal that nine victims are killed each day in the United States in car accidents that are reported to involve a distracted driver. In addition, more than 1,153 victims are injured each day in the United States in car accidents that are reported to involve a distracted driver.
We have all likely heard discussions concerning the dangers of distracted driving on the television news or at the water cooler at work. According to research, using electronic devices, such as cell phones, while driving increases the chance of a car accident by three times. There are a variety of different types of distracted driving which can include physical, visual and mental distractions while driving.
Texting and driving has been a perennial problem not just here in Oklahoma, but in the rest of the country as well. The danger of this type of distracted driving is obvious because it removes a driver's eyes from the road long enough to cause a collision or be involved in one. However, drivers still persist in practicing this dangerous act. Nonetheless, knowing the latest statistics about texting and driving may change a driver's perspective, preventing future car accidents and the eventual injuries and fatalities that come with them.
Sharing the road is the basic obligation of all drivers. Whether a vehicle is as large and heavy as a truck or as small and lightweight as a motorcycle, sharing the road safely with others is the best way to prevent accidents. Unfortunately, some drivers fail to meet this obligation, compromising the safety of other motorists. Typically, motorcycle riders are the ones who pay the price because their vehicles provide little protection in an accident.
Car accidents are regular occurrences on Oklahoma roads and highways, sometimes resulting in serious injuries. Whether the collision is caused by texting and driving, a distracted driver or a drunk driver, it is the operator's responsibility to remain at the scene of the accident.