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When distracted driving veers your way

One of the baseline recommendations for safe driving is to keep your eyes on the road. Unfortunately, not every driver heeds this warning. Perhaps you have been the victim of a car accident in which the driver was texting or otherwise not paying attention. You might even be the family member of a person who died because of an injury that resulted from an accident caused by distracted driving. It is sad to think that the damage and heartache caused by many of these accidents was preventable.

Personal injury lawsuits for these incidents are on the rise due to the sharp increase in inattentive drivers. Nowadays, nearly everyone has a smartphone, and the temptation to use them while driving can be strong. Of course, distracted diving isn't just texting, as there are a myriad of other ways to be preoccupied. New legislation can go some of the way to prevent these types of accidents, but if the worst happens and you or a loved one becomes a victim, it is important to remember that you have rights.

What is distracted driving?

Distracted driving, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is any activity that takes your attention away from the road while you are driving. There are three main types of distraction: visual, mental, and cognitive. These activities can include texting, checking notifications, using the maps feature on a cell phone, changing the radio station, eating and talking on a cell phone.

Distracted driving statistics

Unfortunately, it has been reported that in the United States, nine people die every day from distracted driving accidents and 1,000 more are injured. Between the year 2010 and the year 2015, the rate jumped from 3,092 to 3,477 deaths for this reason. In 2015, almost 400,000 injuries occurred due to an accident involving an inattentive driver.

Preventing distracted driving

California and many other states are adopting laws to reduce the number of absentminded motorists. Most of these laws prohibit texting while operating a motor vehicle. Some states require hands-free devices, and others forbid government employees from using a cellular phone while they drive. As the numbers of accidents pour in, many communities are forming educational and outreach campaigns as well. Each person can also choose to prevent these accidents by refusing to use their phone while they are behind the wheel.

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