The Consequences of Distracted Driving
In 2018, distracted driving claimed 2,841 lives. While any behavior that takes your focus away from driving is considered distracted driving, texting and driving is one of the worst things you can do behind the wheel. To understand why texting and driving is so dangerous, we’ll need to delve into the types of distraction and how each act of distracted driving puts you and the drivers around you at risk.
Types of Distraction
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 3 main types of distraction:
- When you take your eyes off the road, you are experiencing a visual distraction,
- When you take your hands off the wheel, you are experiencing a manual distraction, and
- When you take your mind off driving, you are experiencing a cognitive distraction.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines distracted driving as “any activity that diverts attention from driving.”
Some common examples include:
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to people in your vehicle
- Adjusting the stereo or navigation system
- Changing climate controls
- Using a cellphone
Many of these behaviors combine 1 or 2 types of distraction, but texting and driving is so dangerous because it combines all 3.
Driving the Length of a Football Field with Your Eyes Closed
You may have heard some people say that texting behind the wheel is like driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed. When you are traveling at 55 mph, this is true because texting takes your eyes off the road for an average of 5 seconds.
Even driving straight down an empty football field could put you in harm’s way, but when you are driving, you are also surrounded by multiple other vehicles and a pedestrian, bicyclist, wild animal, or another obstacle could enter the roadway at any time.
With all this in mind, it’s no surprise that texting and driving has disastrous consequences. Even those who survive distracted driving accidents can be left with serious injuries and lifelong disabilities.
What To Do if You Are Injured by a Distracted Driver
At the Zambrano Law Firm, we know you would never text and drive or drive while distracted. Unfortunately, no one can control the behavior of others.
If you are injured or bereaved by a car accident in which someone else is texting and driving or otherwise distracted, please call us at (956) 627-0908 to discuss your legal options.
Your initial consultation is free – contact us today to get started.