How Many Car Accidents are Caused by Texting in the US?

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What Is Distracted Driving? 

Many people think distracted driving means texting or talking on the phone while operating a motor vehicle, but in fact, distracted driving can apply to any activity that requires the driver to divert their attention from the road ahead.

These behaviors can include,

  • Texting
  • Talking on the Phone
  • Changing the Radio
  • Programming a GPS
  • Talking to Passengers
  • Applying Makeup
  • Eating
  • Drinking

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, texting is the most dangerous distraction because sending or reading a text message can divert your eyes from the road for five whole seconds.

This may seem like no time at all, but when traveling at high rates of speeds, traveling on curvy roads, or busy times of the day, an accident only takes a second to occur. 

In fact, if you are traveling at 55 mph it only takes five seconds to drive the length of a football field, now think about doing that with your eyes closed, or completely diverted from the road. Scary. 

Therefore, any activity you participate in, or diverts your attention away from the road, even for a second, is considered distracted driving. When you get behind the wheel of a car, devote your full attention to driving and reduce your risk of causing a crash. 

As of now, the NHTSA is leading the nationwide effort to reduce unsafe driving practices and save lives.

If you are interested in learning more about the statistics of distracted driving or want to know the laws that apply to you, check your state's laws.

Your specific state legislature and governor are who make the laws that apply to distracted driving practices and consequences.

Most states now have laws that make texting and driving, and even talking on the phone while driving, illegal.  Visit the NHTSA State Laws page to learn more about the laws in your state.

Car Crash Statistics for Texting and Driving Accidents

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are about 481,000 drivers using their cell phones while driving, during daylight hours alone.

This behavior is extremely dangerous and this type of distracted driving is responsible for claiming 3,450 lives in 2016. This number does not include the 391,000 individuals who were only injured in crashes that involved texting, or other distracted driving practices. 

These numbers are extremely high, and distracted driving causes an enormous potential for severe injuries and deaths on our roadways roads.

Unsurprisingly, teenagers were most at risk for distracted driving, and their age group was the largest reported for being involved in texting and driving accidents that result in fatalities.

Can You Sue if You are the Victim of a Car Accident Caused by Texting and Driving? 

If you or someone dear to you was recently involved in a motor vehicle accident that was caused by texting or other distracting behavior, then it is extremely important to know and understand your rights. 

Any type of car crash that was the fault of another individual and caused by their negligent actions can result in a lawsuit.

You should never bear the burden of the damages and medical bills you incurred due to someone else's reckless actions behind the wheel. 

If someone chooses to text and drive and injures you or a family member, it is their financial responsibility to make sure your medical bills, treatments and other damages are taken care of. 

However, individuals and their insurance company will attempt to relinquish themselves from this responsibility, leaving victims angry and in financial and physical turmoil. 

That is where a premier law firm comes in to help.

Hiring the right personal injury attorney can make all the difference in a distracted driving car accident case.

Your lawyer will gather evidence, fight for your legal rights, and get you the compensation you need if you were the injured victim in a texting and driving accident. 

Here is a post on which questions to ask a PI attorney to make sure you hire the right on for your needs.

What Can You Do to Help Prevent Car Accidents Caused by Distracted Driving? 

If you want to help prevent distracted driving accidents or reduce your risk of causing a wreck, here are some steps you can take. 

First, sign up to take the pledge here and vow to protect your life and the lives of others by never texting or talking on the phone while driving. 

Another option is to enable the Do Not Disturb function on your phone while you are operating any type of motor vehicle.

Your phone even encourages this behavior by allowing you to set custom auto responses that notify any person who attempts to contact you that you are driving and that you will receive their message when you arrive safely at your destination. 

Lastly, you can spread the word and encourage friends and family about the risks involved in distracted driving.

Here is an infographic that can help you out.

Not only are you putting your life and the lives of others in danger, but you can also be fined and ticketed if you are caught engaging in these perilous and often illegal behaviors.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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