Every driver is distracted at some point while driving. However, distracted driving has become more prevalent as a cause of car accidents since the introduction of smartphones. For example, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety states that over half of teenage drivers use a cell phone for texting or talking while driving a car. Cell phone usage is only one type of distracted driving that you can completely prevent. Understand how you can prevent distracted driving and increase your chances of avoiding an accident.
Never Use Your Cell Phone
Unless there is a legitimate emergency, you should not use your cell phone while driving. Many states have made driving with a cell phone that does not have a hands-free feature illegal. While hands-free features are much safer, simply being on a phone call can be distracting and cause a driver to miss important visual or audible clues to avoid an accident. Never, ever text while driving. Some drivers feel that it is acceptable to text at red lights or stop signs while they are waiting, but this habit is a terrible one, as it simply continues to distract the driver even after the light has changed. Cell phones have been shown to be addicting. It is best to simply avoid using a cell phone in the car unless there is an emergency and it is necessary.
Do Not Drive When Drowsy
The Centers for Disease Control states that over 6,000 car accidents are a result of drowsy driving. Drowsiness actually increases the risk of an accident by over four times. Unfortunately, government studies have shown that almost 40% of all drivers have admitted to falling asleep at the wheel due to drowsiness. If you feel tired or drowsy, take the time to pull off of the roadway and get some sleep. Your life and the lives of other drivers and passengers is worth you getting home just a bit later than scheduled.
Limit Passengers and Activity
All drivers can be distracted when there are too many passengers or too much activity going on in their vehicles. Typically, this is a more common cause of accidents for teenagers who are simply not experienced enough to handle the new skill of driving along with managing the activity and passengers in their car. However, anytime there is too much noise or distraction in a car, it can lead to an accident as the driver may be distracted.
Avoid Eating and Drinking
Many people eat and drink while they drive. However, it has been shown that eating and drinking while driving is a major distraction and a cause of car accidents. Having your meal in your car may make you feel as if you are saving time, but if you are in an accident, you will not only have lost time, but you may suffer injuries and property damage, as well. Food spills are one of the most common causes of distraction and accidents.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured in a car accident due to another driver being distracted, contact our experienced personal injury attorneys at Griggs Injury Law at (816) 474-0202 to help you build a strong personal injury case. Call us today for your free consultation.