Distracted driving has become an increasing problem as technology has advanced. While advanced safety technology has reduced fatalities over the years, humans are still flawed, and are prone to becoming distracted while driving. On average, nine lives are lost every day due to distracted driving, with a thousand others left injured.
Types of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving accidents occur when a person is operating a vehicle while preoccupied with another activity which diverts their attention. According to the CDC, there are three primary types of distractions:
- Visual – any distraction which causes you to take your eyes off the road.
- Cognitive – a distraction which diverts your mind from driving, daydreaming for example.
- Manual – this kind of distraction is anything that causes you to take your hands off the wheel to attend to it – whether that be eating, drinking, or even adjusting the radio.
Some distractions fall under all three types of distractions, texting, for example. It diverts your mind, eyes, and hands from the task at hand. This is why texting while driving is one of the leading causes of accidents.
The CDC has reported that when traveling at 55 MPH, the action of sending or reading a text will take your eyes off the road for five seconds. That length of time is enough to travel the distance of a football field.
Preventing Distracted Driving Accidents
Distracted driving preventions have been started in many states, including Utah. The hand-held use of cell phones while driving has technically been illegal in Utah for several years, however, representatives are pushing for a ban of any texting or calling, unless it’s hands-free.
There have also been many informative campaigns which have been launched in attempts to educate drivers of the dangers of driving distracted. However, the best way to ensure that you don’t drive distracted, is to decide not to do so yourself.
Some precautions you can take on the personal-level include:
- If you ever feel drowsy while driving, park your vehicle, and take a nap. If that is not possible, call someone else to drive you home.
- Your cell phone should only be reserved for emergency use while driving. If you must take or make a call, park your vehicle in a safe spot first.
- Never exceed the number of passengers meant to be in your car – and be clear about appropriate behavior before your journey begins.
- Refrain from eating or drinking while driving, if you need to eat, pull over before you do so.
Distracted Driving Accidents
Distracted driving can be just as dangerous as driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident, and are unsure of what to do next, contact our office today. Our personal injury lawyers have years of experience handling personal injury claims. Call our office today at 801-773-9488 for a free consultation and to speak with one of our experienced distracted driving accident attorneys.