Driving has always been an activity that comes along with some risk. More than 90 percent of accidents in cars are caused by human error. When you’re piloting a couple tons worth of metal at high speeds, the consequences can be dire. That’s why distracted driving is such a hot topic today.
For as long as people have been driving, there have been distractions that take away focus from the road. Whether it was eating, chatting with passengers, putting on makeup, or any other distracting activity, people have been diverting their attention from the roads and causing accidents for years. Now, with the advent of smartphones, the distractions have only increased.
Three Different Distraction Types
Distractions while driving are classified into three distinct categories.
A manual distraction while driving involves an activity that removes your hands from the steering wheel. A visual distraction occurs when something you’re doing takes your eyes off the road. Finally, a cognitive distraction is one that causes your mind to wander from the act of driving.
Each one of these types of distractions greatly increases your risk of accident, injury, or even death on the road. Some distractions that people allow behind the wheel fall into multiple, or even all these categories.
Distracted Driving Statistics
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):
- In 2015, there were 3,477 deaths caused by distracted drivers
- 10% of all fatal crashes were related to distracted driving
- 15% of all injuries from accidents involved distraction-affected drivers
- In 2015, an estimated 391,000 people were injured in distraction-related accidents
Why is this such a problem in our society today? Distractions have always been an issue for motorists, but the amount of distractions continues to increase. We carry around a piece of technology that allows us immediate access to friends, family, and almost limitless information in our smartphones. Our dashes now come with shiny, touch screen interfaces that display all the information we could ever want and more.
It seems like it’s getting harder and harder to keep our eyes on the road. It’s just a few seconds, right? You can just balance your focus on your phone and driving and everything will be okay, won’t it? You’ve done it before. It’s this rationalization of a deadly activity that leads to hundreds of thousands of accidents every year.
Is Distracted Driving the Next Drunk Driving?
The most alarming distracted driving statistics come into play with our teenagers. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), 50 percent of teens will be in a crash before they’ve even graduated from high school. In crashes with teenagers, 58 percent of them involved a distracted teen driver. Half of our teens will be involved in a crash before being out of adolescence and more than half of these accidents will have distracted driving as a major contributor. The fact is, our teens are more than twice as likely to have been under the influence of smartphone use as they are to be under the influence of alcohol.
The past decade has seen a major increase of public service announcements and public interest campaigns surrounding the dangers of distracted driving. While we’ve seen a slight decrease in distracted driving statistics over the years, our children are still the most likely victims of distracted driving. You wouldn’t drink and drive. Don’t let anything distract you either.
Contact Brooks Law Group
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a distraction-affected accident, call Brooks Law Group today for a free consultation. Our number is (800) LAW-3030. Our car accident attorneys and staff know how important it is to stay safe on our roads. At Brooks Law Group, it’s our commitment to “Provide the Best Client Experience Possible” and it’s reflected in everything we do. It’s for this reason that our clients pay nothing unless we recover money for them. Don’t wait another second to receive the compensation you deserve, contact us today online or over the phone!