How big of a problem is distracted driving ? It's estimated that each day in the U.S., 8 people are killed and 1,161 are injured in car accidents involving a distracted driver. What exactly are these drivers doing behind the wheel? Here are the most common driver distractions that lead to serious injuries and fatalities on the roads:
Many people assume you have to have something in your hands in order to be distracted behind the wheel, but that's not the case. Cognitive distraction occurs when a driver begins to zone out and think about things outside of driving. Even if the driver keeps his eyes on the road, he can still be distracted by his thoughts.
Of course, cell phones are one of the most common types of distractions. Drivers can become distracted by their cell phones if they choose to text, make phone calls, or use any other feature on their phones while behind the wheel. Some drivers think it's ok to quickly take their eyes off of the road to find a song to play on their phone or check a text, but looking down for even 5 seconds can be dangerous. In 5 seconds, a vehicle traveling at 55 mph can cover the length of a football field, which means a lot can happen within this small timeframe.
Passengers in your car may distract you by asking you to look at something or starting a deep conversation with you. But, those aren't the only people who can distract you behind the wheel. People outside of your vehicle, such as other drivers on the road, can actually be more of a distraction than people inside of your car. Every driver should make a conscious effort to focus solely on the road instead of watching another driver or paying too much attention to the passengers inside the vehicle.
Reaching For Something
While you're behind the wheel, don't reach into the front or back seat to try to find something unless you have pulled over and stopped the vehicle. Trying to grab something that is out of your reach, whether it is a ringing cell phone, tube of lipstick, or pair of sunglasses, is dangerous. You may begin to shift your attention from the road to figuring out how you can get your hands on the item, and as you stretch further and further, you may be forced to take your eyes off of the road as well.
Remember, this is just a short list of driver distractions. There are many other dangerous distractions that drivers should stay away from, including eating and drinking, putting on makeup, and adjusting the radio or air conditioner.
If you or a loved one has been injured by a distracted driver, contact personal injury attorney James Rush at Rush Injury Law . You may be able to recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Contact us today by calling 415-897-4801 or filling out the online form on our website www.rushinjurylaw.com to request a free