The dangers of distracted driving are well known. In fact, 46 states currently have laws against texting while driving. Most major highways are now equipped with “text stops”, designated pull-offs where drivers can safely, and easily, exit the road and read or send text messages. But despite the risks, millions of Americans still use their cell phones while driving every day. And texting is no longer the only phone-related concern. Apps, including Snapchat and Instagram – and even driving-related Apps, such as Waze – are taking our attention from the road. Anyone driving in and around the Greater Boston area can see this problem on a daily basis – whether driving to or from work or just to the local market – if you look around you will see drivers constantly looking down at their phones – and it’s very dangerous. Very dangerous. How dangerous you ask, look at the statistics below…
70% of Teens Report Using Apps While Behind the Wheel
All ages are guilty of talking, texting, or otherwise using cell phones while driving, but teens are the biggest offenders. Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) recently partnered with Liberty Mutual Insurance to conduct a survey of 2,500 teen drivers. Of those surveyed, about 70 percent reported using apps while driving. This is a scary statistic, but it gets even worse. When 2,400 drivers of all ages were surveyed by the National Safety Council (NSC), 74 percent reported using Facebook while driving.
Distracted Driving May be to Blame for 25% of Auto Accidents
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of deadly auto accidents in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than eight people are killed and 1,000 people are injured due to distracted driving, every single day. However, because distracted driving is rarely reported and hard to prove, these figures are likely much higher. The NSC estimates that approximately 25 percent of all auto accidents are a direct result of cell phone use while driving.
The average driver has traveled the length of a football field in the time it takes to read a single text. That is far too long to have your eyes off the road. If anything unexpected happens – an animal runs in front of your car, another car swerves, the car in front of you slams on its brakes – the results could be deadly.
Don’t Become a Statistic
Defensive driving is crucial to protect yourself from distracted drivers. Never assume another vehicle sees you. This is especially true for pedestrians and bicyclists; make eye contact with the driver before walking or riding in front of a car. When driving, always leave ample distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. And avoid distracted driving at all times. Put your cell phone in the glove box before setting off, and find a safe place to pull over if you must read or send a text. No text is worth a life. We all know the risks of distracted driving, yet this problem continues to grow. Avoid the temptation and educate your kids on the dangers. Most importantly, model safe behavior. You can tell them not to text and drive until you’re blue in the face, but if they see you doing it, your words will have very little impact.
Altman & Altman, LLP – Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyers Serving Boston and the Surrounding Areas
If you have been injured by a distracted driver, the auto accident team at Altman & Altman, LLP can help. We have extensive experience with these types of cases and an impressive track record of obtaining compensation for clients. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.