Distracted Driving: The Dangers of Texting
Defining Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is the leading cause of car accidents in the United States. Distracted driving is as anything that diverts attention from driving, such as using a cell phone, eating, conversing with other passengers, programming a navigation system, and any other activity that takes the driver’s attention away from the road for more than five seconds. Out of all the listed distractions, using a cell phone is the most popular. Composing or reading a text always takes drivers’ concentration off the road for enough time to collide with another vehicle or pedestrian.
Texting on the Road
Unfortunately, during the day, almost 500,000 drivers are using a cell phone while driving. When a driver chooses to text while driving, that driver affects every single driver around them. Studies show that at least nine people are killed and about one thousand people are injured daily because of a distracted driver. Teenagers are the largest group that text while driving and are responsible for the majority of the accidents caused by texting.
Types of Driving Distractions
The reason why texting while driving is so dangerous is that it’s correlated to three separate categories of driving distractions: manual, visual, and cognitive. Manual driving distractions cause a driver to take one or both hands off the steering wheel such as eating, smoking, turning knobs, searching for an item, or adjusting a seatbelt. Visual distractions cause a driver to take their eyes off the road and including searching for items, checking GPS, changing the radio station, adjusting temperature controls, or applying makeup. Cognitive driving distractions cause a driver’s mind to wander away from the road like conversing with a passenger, thinking about an upsetting situation, daydreaming, suffering road rage, or driving under the influence.
Texting while driving incorporates all three driving distraction. Looking at a cell phone instead of focusing on the road is a visual distraction, typing a text message instead of keeping both hands on the steering wheel is a manual distraction, and concentrating on the conversation instead of the road is a cognitive distraction.
Although texting seems like a simple activity, it’s highly dangerous to do while driving. Thousands of people lose their lives every year because of a driver texting instead of focusing on the road. Texting while driving is considered a form of negligence that has severe personal consequences and is also illegal under state law. Drivers will not only have to pay a fine, but they will also be responsible for paying for an injured victim’s medical expenses.
At Los Angeles Injury Group, we are well aware of how many injuries result from another driver’s distracted driving. Our attorneys are experienced with obtaining winning verdicts for our clients who receive injuries from another driver’s negligence. If you, or someone you love, received injuries in a car accident caused by distracted driving, call (310) 954-7248.