The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has stated that in 2015, 3,477 people were killed in crashes involving distracted driving. The same year also saw 391,000 people injured in similar crashes. With the development of new technologies, distracted driving is becoming more prevalent across South Carolina and the rest of the U.S., which is why it’s important to raise awareness of it and keep others from engaging in it.
NHTSA defines distracted driving as any activity that takes one’s attention from the road. This includes texting and talking on the phone, talking with other passengers, eating and drinking, and playing with the radio or navigation system. Sending and reading texts is especially dangerous, as it can take a driver’s eyes off the road for up to five seconds. In a car traveling 55 mph, that would be like driving the length of a football field with one’s eyes closed.
Teens have been found to be the most susceptible to distracted driving. They may, however, be the most effective in preventing other teens from engaging in such behavior. NHTSA also advises parents, educators, and employers to set a good example and raise awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. As part of a national campaign, the agency has also designated April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
Many car accident claims involve distracted driving because it is a form of negligence. Accident victims who know they were not at fault may benefit from consulting a lawyer about filing such a claim because the other party’s auto insurance company will be aggressive in denying them a settlement. A lawyer might hire investigators to gather the police report and any evidence found at the crash site, and he or she may opt to handle all negotiations, litigating as a last resort. A successful claim could cover vehicle repair costs, hospital bills, and more.