Distracted driving is a major problem throughout the country, causing thousands of injuries every year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In fact, the number of accidents caused by this dangerous habit continues to increase annually and the CDC estimates that about eight people are killed in related crashes daily.
Other facts you should be aware of concerning distracted driving includes:
- In 2018, 2,841 people were killed in accidents involving distracted driving and roughly 400,000 were injured.
- About one in five of the victims who were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver that same year were not in vehicles but were walking, cycling, or standing on the side of the road at the time of the accident.
- Texting while behind the wheel is the most dangerous driving distraction. When traveling at 55 mph, reading or writing a text for five seconds is equivalent to driving across an entire football field blindfolded.
- Other common distractions include eating, grooming, changing the radio station, adjusting the music or a GPS, and daydreaming.
As such, it is crucial for us to all partake in making the roads safer by doing what we can to avoid accidents caused by distracted driving.
Here are some tips you can follow to help you keep your focus on driving and the road ahead:
- Maintain your attention and focus on the act of driving: According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), drivers should always actively check the road ahead and remain aware of others on the road, including bicyclists, motorcyclists, and pedestrians. Never allow anything to divert your attention away from driving.
- Make sure you are comfortable before you start the engine: Getting comfortable before you start the engine and begin driving is critical. You want to make sure that your mirrors, seat, navigation system, air conditioner, and entertainment system are all properly set and ready to go to avoid fiddling around with anything once you are on the road.
- Try to minimize or limit your interactions with passengers: It might seem rude to be quiet or to not engage in conversations with your passengers but interacting and conversing with them can be immensely distracting. Even if your passengers are only talking amongst themselves, this can be a distraction, so ask that they try to remain still, buckled up, and keep the volume down.
- Do not eat or drink: If you need to eat, try to do so before you embark on your trip, or pull over to a safe area where you can snack. If you are taking a long road trip and absolutely need to eat while you drive, it is recommended that you avoid messy foods that are difficult to easily consume or handle.
- Secure any loose objects: We keep all kinds of things in our vehicles, including our children’s toys, purses, and other belongings. Before you begin driving, make sure these items are secured, so that you do not have to attempt to reach for them if they move around while you are driving.
- Avoid the use of electronic devices: Refrain from checking your cell phone or any other electronic device while you are driving. If you happen to be using your phone for navigational purposes, obtain a cradle that can keep the device visible without requiring you to move your head. You should never attempt to text, send emails, surf the web, or play games while driving.
INJURED? CONTACT A TULSA DISTRACTED DRIVING ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
At Richardson Richardson Boudreaux PLLC, our lawyers are dedicated to working hard for the rights of injured victims. We will fight to protect your right to compensation against big companies and insurance agencies, particularly if your injury has severely impacted your life. Our Tulsa car accident attorneys are leaders in recovering compensation for injured victims throughout Oklahoma and Texas.
Contact our firm today to schedule a free initial consultation with a knowledgeable member of our team.