There is no question that distracted drivers are a contributing factor to a significant number of accidents News reports every day include stories about traffic accidents caused by people who were talking on a cell phone, texting while driving, who spilled coffee in their lap, or were otherwise distracted from the traffic around them on the road. A study by the Governors Highway Association contends that distracted driving was a factor in accidents in 2016 that resulted in 3,450 highway deaths. That figure totaled more than 9 percent of all traffic deaths that year. Thousands more were injured that year in accidents where distracted driving was a factor. And 2016 was not unique. Distracted drivers kill and injure thousands of other motorists every year.
While no one disputes the dangers of drunk driving, distracted driving often gets overlooked. Despite the relative lack of attention, texting while driving has increasingly become a significant cause of accidents where distracted driving is a factor. Drivers who text are nearly 25% more likely to be involved in an accident. That is the same likelihood as a driver who drinks four beers before driving. This has led to comparisons equating distracted driving to drunk driving. Whether you accept that comparison, there is no question that distracted driving is a serious problem.
What Are the Top Three Driver Distractions?
The GHSA argues that cell phone use and texting are two of the most common distractions for drivers. While cell phone use, both talking and texting, are common causes of driver distraction, they are by no means the only causes of driver distraction. According to federal statistics, any number of activities can result in distracted driving. These activities can include cell phone use, including talking and texting, eating, drinking, talking with passengers, adjusting the radio or other audio settings, adjusting temperature control settings, or changing settings on your satellite navigation system.
While there are numerous ways a driver can be distracted, all of those distractions have common components. In fact, federal studies put distractions into three categories:
- Visual distractions, which would include any physical distraction that causes you to look away from the road and traffic
- Manual distractions, which includes any activity that causes you to take your hands off the wheel. Examples include eating, drinking, tuning your radio, changing CDs or tapes or otherwise, adjusting a navigation system, or using a cell phone to talk or text.
- Cognitive distractions, including any activity that could take your attention away from driving. Obviously, this includes any visual or manual distractions, as well, but also would include such mundane things as daydreaming or giving your attention to any activity other than driving your car.
Contact Us Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a Miami Personal Injury Attorney
If you have been injured in a traffic accident in the Miami area involving a distracted driver, you should talk to a Miami personal injury attorney. You could have options for recovering damages. You should consult with someone who can maximize the compensation you recover for your damages. Contact Flagler Personal Injury Group at (305) 424-8445 or through our online contact form. Our lawyers serve the greater Miami area.
We handle a variety of cases, so call us now if you have any questions.
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