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What's so dangerous about distracted driving?

Just about everyone has felt the urge to text or talk on their phone while driving. In fact, there are many people who act upon this urge on a regular basis. While most people are aware of the dangers of distracted driving, most don't truly understand the extent of this danger. Here is some information about the many perils of distracted driving. 

Dangers of distracted driving

As you probably know from experience, distracted driving is incredibly common on the roads. In one survey, almost 75 percent of drivers reported that they frequently see drivers talking on the phone or texting. About 80 percent of cell phone owners report that they use their phone regularly while driving. Of course, the prevalence of distracted driving has serious consequences. Almost 6,000 people died and about 1.5 million were injured in traffic accidents involving driver distraction.

In spite of the dangers, the fact distracted driving is ubiquitous is not surprising. For many people, it can be hard to resist the temptation to remain connected to the outside world when they get in the driver's seat of a car. Because of how busy most people are, many drivers use their phones to do work or connect with loved ones to multitask. 

Studies show that an individual talking on the phone, text messaging, and even on a hands-free cell phone will have a slower reaction time. This is especially true when it comes to text messaging, which takes the driver's eyes off the road, hands off the wheel and focus from driving.

While many people swear that they can multitask, the truth is that the brain cannot concentrate fully on two tasks simultaneously. Some drivers argue that talking on the phone is the same as talking with a passenger in the vehicle. This may in some respects be true: but talking with passengers has also been shown to increase accident risk. In addition, a conversation between a passenger and the driver will change depending on the demands the driver is currently facing. For example, if the road conditions are dangerous, the passenger and the driver can more easily suspend the conversation until road conditions get better. In fact, a conscientious passenger will be able to alert the driver about dangerous road conditions up ahead. On the other hand, the individual on the other end of a phone call will not have the same context and will simply distract the driver.

Undoubtedly, distracted driving is a major problem that remains an issue despite numerous laws and public service messages regarding avoiding distracted driving. If you or a loved one recently got into a traffic accident due to distracted driving, contact an attorney from Rubin Licatesi, P.C. for a free consultation.

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