Distracted driving can be a major threat to others on Texas roadways, including other drivers, pedestrians, passengers and cyclists. Every year, thousands of people lose their lives in traffic accidents caused by distracted driving. In 2015 alone, 3,477 people lost their lives and 391,000 more were injured across the country due to people driving while distracted. In Canada, Allstate estimates that 80 percent of collisions involve some form of distraction. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving is any activity that diverts a driver's attention from the road ahead.
Perhaps the best-known contributor to car accidents caused by distracted driving is the rise of the smartphone. The sounds and notifications of a phone can encourage a driver to divert his or her eyes and mind from the road. Experts advise keeping mobile phones and tablets out of a driver's reach while behind the wheel. Even sending a simple text message could divert a driver's attention for around five seconds, enough time to drive the length of a football field. Removing physical access to the devices can help to quell the temptation to browse the internet or send a text while stuck at a red light.
Even devices designed to help drivers can be a source of distraction. Many people use GPS to find their way to a new location. However, if they are directing the GPS and providing an address while driving, they can easily be distracted by pressing buttons and correcting errors. By setting the GPS for a desired destination before leaving, people can better avoid dangerous distractions.
Distracted drivers pose a serious threat to others' health and well-being. People can suffer severe injuries and lifelong disabilities as a result of auto accidents. A personal injury lawyer may help people who were injured due to someone else's negligent driving to pursue compensation for their damages.