Previous posts here have discussed the dangers of texting and driving, the increase in fatal traffic accidents and the potential for distracted driving to impact the number of car accidents facing our communities. In general, distracted driving is a growing problem that is also potentially leading to a growth in fatal traffic accidents.
There are many ways drivers can become distracted today, including through a variety of mobile devices, social media platforms and car electronics and navigation devices. According to a university transportation institute, distracted driving using a cell phone or other electronics increases the chances of a car accident by three times. Distracted driving includes a broad category of behaviors drivers may engage in that removes their visual, manual and mental focus from the roadway and may result in car accidents.
Included among distracted driving behaviors are: texting and driving; using a cell phone while driving; using a navigation system or device while driving; using a map while driving; using the internet or social media while driving; using the radio while driving; engaging with passengers or children while driving; eating or drinking while driving; grooming while driving; or cleaning up spilled food or beverages while driving. Again, distracted driving can include any activity that removes the driver’s visual, manual or mental focus from the roadway and texting while driving is considered particularly dangerous because it combines visual, manual and cognitive distractions.
Distracted driving can be costly physically, financially and emotionally for victims. Oftentimes, distracted drivers, including young drivers, appear to fail to realize the serious nature of distracted driving. The legal process affords protections for victims injured by a careless distracted driver and it is important for victims to be familiar with those options to help them recover compensation for the harm and damages they have suffered.