Often preventable yet increasingly common, distracted driving incidents can leave you filled with anger and disbelief.
Distracted driving was the cause of 3,142 deaths in 2020 alone. Thousands of other victims suffered injuries in these preventable crashes. Understanding why distracted driving is so problematic and widespread is critical for everyone who gets behind the wheel.
Distracted driving goes beyond just texting
Most people immediately think of texting or talking on the phone when they hear about distracted driving; however, distractions come in various forms. Changing the radio station to eating or even conversing with a passenger are examples of common actions that can distract a driver.
The rise of technology exacerbates the problem
Advanced in-car technologies like touch-screen controls and voice-activated systems can be equally distracting as smartphones. While these features are designed to make life easier, they often require considerable cognitive effort, pulling the focus away from the road.
Emotional and mental distractions
Emotional or mental distractions can be hazardous. Your ability to focus on the road is compromised if you’re driving while upset, angry or preoccupied with other thoughts. Emotional states can directly impact cognitive functions like attention, perception and reaction time, making them equally dangerous.
Financial and legal ramifications
If distracted driving played a role in an accident that has caused you harm, understanding the specific type of distraction can be crucial for legal proceedings. This information can help establish fault, determine who to name as defendants and be pivotal in the successful resolution of a personal injury claim. Victims may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages and even emotional suffering.
As a victim, equipping yourself with this knowledge can aid your recovery process and help you get the justice you deserve. While nothing can undo the emotional and physical trauma that you have endured if you’ve recently been harmed by a distracted driver, seeking compensation can help to ensure that you’re not burdened by the costs inspired by someone else’s negligent conduct.