Posted on Wednesday, September 6th, 2017 at 5:34 am
The NHTSA reports that 3,477 people died and approximately 391,000 people were injured in traffic accidents involving distracted drivers. This represents 15 percent of the injury crashes and 10 percent of the fatal crashes for that year. There is a lengthy list of attributes included in driver distractions in the NHTSA’s report. However, the five actions below are common reasons we see for distracted driving accidents.
Cell Phone Use
Cell phone use is one of the most common causes of distracted driving accidents throughout the nation. Instead of being focused on their surroundings and the task of driving, motorists are focused on the conversations they are having, text messages, social media, or email. Texting while driving has become such a problem, most states have laws forbidding texting while driving. Many states, including California, prohibit the use of handheld cell phones while driving.
Eating and Drinking
Because many of us are constantly on the go eating meals in the car has become a common occurrence. However, eating and drinking while driving is a huge distraction because you are using your hands and eyes to focus on your meal rather than focus on operating the vehicle. Even your cognitive functions are focused on what you are eating rather than the task of driving. In addition to the act itself being distracting, spilled drinks and food are a potentially deadly distraction as you take your eyes off the road and your hands off the wheel to clean up the mess.
Programming Navigation Systems and Reading Maps
Drivers should not take the role as navigators. If you do not have a person who is riding with you who can act as a navigator by reading maps and programming the GPS, you need to program your GPS or map your route before you leave home to reduce the distraction caused by using these items while driving.
Interacting with other passengers can be a serious distraction, especially for inexperienced teen drivers. Some states limit the number of passengers a teen driver can transport. However, this distraction is not limited to teen drivers. Adults taking care of children or engaging other passengers can often lose focus and cause a distracted driving accident.
Grooming and Dressing
Grooming and dressing go along with eating and drinking. Because our lives are so rushed, we feel as if we need to use our vehicle as a dressing room. While this may be fine when the vehicle is in park, it is not safe while you are driving to put on makeup, fix your hair, or change clothes.
Recovering Damages for Your Distracted Driving Accident Claim
If a distracted driver causes you injury, you can recover money for your injuries and damages by filing a personal injury claim. The damages you might recover include both economic (i.e. lost wages, medical bills, etc.) and noneconomic damages (i.e. pain and suffering).
Our Sacramento distracted driving accident attorneys are dedicated to fighting for the right of accident victims to receive fair and just settlements for their injury claims. Please call The Tiemann Law Firm at (916) 999-9000 to request your free legal consultation. You may also request additional information by visiting our website. Our law firm serves clients in Sacramento, Folsom, Roseville, El Dorado Hills and other communities in the greater Sacramento area.