The Dangers of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving causes around one in 10 fatal car accidents and almost 20 percent of all motor vehicle accidents in which injuries occur. It’s difficult for police and accident experts to estimate exactly how many crashes are caused by distracted driving because motorists often don’t admit they weren’t paying attention.
Distracted driving is such a common cause of collisions because it is so dangerous and many people underestimate how risky it is to drive while distracted. Drivers who make the choice to lose their focus behind the wheel and who cause harm to others because of that choice should be held accountable for the damage they cause to occur. A Miami accident attorney can help victims and their families to pursue legal action for compensation against those who caused a distracted driving crash to occur.
Understanding the Risks of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving occurs any time a driver takes his mind off driving, his hands off the wheel, or his eyes off the road, according to AAA. This can occur when a driver looks at his phone, sends a text, eats while driving, changes the radio, talks to passengers, or engages in any activity other than focusing on the road.
Unfortunately, if a driver takes his eyes off the road for just two seconds, this can double the risk of an accident. Drivers who sent texts actually take their eyes off the road for much longer than just two seconds. The average driver who sends a text takes his or her eyes off the road for long enough to drive the full length of a football field.
A driver who isn’t looking at the road, even briefly, may not see a car stop in front, a pedestrian walks onto the road, or a driver turn into an intersection. Whenever a driver isn’t looking at the road, the driver isn’t able to react to his surroundings and can thus cause an accident to occur.
Drivers who are distracted can also suffer from inattention blindness, which can occur even if a driver is using a hands-free phone. If a driver is thinking about a phone call or about anything else that is distracting him, the driver may see things but the brain won’t process them so it is as if the driver didn’t actually see them at all. The brain is not good at multi-tasking, and research has shown that even driver’s using hands-free devices face a significantly increased collision risk.
Driving while distracted not only prevents drivers from seeing what is going on around them, but it can also affect driving performance and can cause motorists to be slower to react to stimuli. If drivers are paying attention to anything other than the wheel, they become a danger to themselves and others because they cannot respond quickly to adjust to what other cars around them are doing. This makes it more likely they’ll strike other motorists or pedestrians, causing an accident and perhaps serious injury.
A Miami accident attorney can provide help to anyone who has been involved in a distracted driving crash. An experienced attorney at our firm can help you to determine if you can recover compensation from a distracted driver and can help you to pursue a case to get both economic and non-financial loss covered.