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Distracted Driving
April 3, 2023

April is observed as Distracted Driving Awareness Month in the United States. The purpose of this month-long campaign is to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving, which is one of the leading causes of road accidents in the country.

Distracted Driving: A Major Cause of Road Accidents

Distracted Driving Month

Distracted driving is any activity that takes your attention away from driving. This includes texting, talking on the phone, eating or drinking, grooming, using a navigation system, or adjusting the radio or other controls. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving claimed 2,841 lives in 2018 alone.

With the rise of technology and social media, distracted driving has become a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

If you're a driver, you must understand the dangers of distracted driving and take measures to prevent it. In this article, we'll discuss the importance of Distracted Driving Awareness Month and provide tips on avoiding distracted driving and staying safe on the road.

Types of Distracted Driving

Let's review the most common types of distracted driving.

Visual Distraction

Visual distraction is when the driver takes their eyes off the road. This can happen when a driver is looking at their:

  • phone
  • smartwatch
  • or even a billboard.

Anything that takes the driver's attention away from the road can be considered a visual distraction. Even a quick glance away from the road can be dangerous, as it only takes a split second for an accident to occur.

Manual Distraction

Manual distraction is when the driver takes their hands off the wheel. This can happen when a driver is:

  • eating
  • drinking
  • smoking
  • or adjusting the radio.

Anything that requires the driver to use their hands can be considered a manual distraction. When a driver's hands are not on the wheel, they cannot react as quickly to sudden changes on the road.

Cognitive Distraction

Cognitive distraction is when the driver's mind is not focused on driving. This can happen when a driver is:

  • daydreaming
  • talking on the phone
  • or having an intense conversation with a passenger.

Anything that takes the driver's attention away from driving can be considered a cognitive distraction. When a driver's mind is not focused on driving, they cannot react as quickly to sudden changes on the road.

Auditory Distraction

Auditory distraction is when the driver is distracted by sounds inside or outside of the vehicle. This can happen when a driver is listening to loud music, talking on the phone, or hearing a siren or honking horn. Anything that takes the driver's attention away from the road can be considered an auditory distraction. When a driver's attention is focused on a sound, they cannot react as quickly to sudden changes on the road.

Distracted driving is dangerous and can result in severe accidents and even fatalities. It is essential to understand the different types of distracted driving so that we can take steps to avoid them and keep ourselves and others safe on the road. By staying focused on driving and avoiding distractions, we can all help make the roads safer.

Teens and Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is a leading cause of teen accidents, with cell phone use being the most common distraction. Many states have implemented laws banning cell phone use while driving, but enforcement of these laws can be difficult. Parents can play a role in preventing distracted driving by setting clear rules and expectations for their teen drivers, such as not using cell phones while driving.

6 Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving

You can take many steps to ensure you're not driving distracted.

1. Put Your Phone Away

One of the biggest culprits of distracted driving is using cell phones. Put your phone away before driving, or use a hands-free device to make calls to prevent this.

2. Plan Ahead

Before driving, ensure you have everything you need within reach, including snacks, drinks, and navigation systems. This will help you avoid reaching for things while driving.

3. Avoid Multi-Tasking

Driving requires your full attention, so avoid doing other tasks while driving. This means no eating, drinking, or grooming while behind the wheel.

4. Take Breaks

Long drives can be tiring, so take breaks every few hours to rest and recharge.

5. Speak Up

If you're a passenger in a car and notice that the driver is distracted, speak up and offer to take over driving duties if necessary.

6. Spread Awareness

In addition to following safe driving practices, you can also spread awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. Share information on social media, talk to your friends and family and participate in local events during Distracted Driving Awareness Month. By working together, we can help prevent accidents and save lives.

By following safe driving practices and raising awareness about the dangers of distracted driving, we can make our roads safer for everyone. Remember, it only takes a moment of distraction to cause a lifetime of regret. Stay focused on the road and stay safe.

What To Do If You Were in An Accident Caused By a Distracted Driver

One of the most prevalent causes of car accidents is distracted driving. If you have been in an accident caused by a distracted driver, it can be a scary and overwhelming experience. Here are some steps you should take if you find yourself in this situation:

1. Seek Medical Attention

The first and most important step after any car accident is to seek medical attention. Even if you feel fine, getting checked out by a medical professional is essential. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, and it’s crucial to document any injuries you sustained in the accident. This documentation will be vital if you pursue legal action against the distracted driver.

2. Contact the Police

After an accident, it’s critical to contact the police, even if the accident seems minor. A police report will document the details of the accident and provide important evidence if you decide to pursue legal action. Be sure to provide the police with as much information as possible about the distracted driver, including their name, contact information, and insurance information.

3. Gather Evidence

Gather as much evidence as possible at the accident scene if you can. Take photos of the damage to both vehicles and any injuries you sustained. If there were any witnesses to the accident, get their contact information. This evidence will be critical if you decide to pursue legal action.

4. Contact a Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer

If you were in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you must contact a distracted driving lawyer specializing in personal injury cases. They can advise you on your legal options and help you navigate the complex legal system. Be sure to provide your attorney with all the evidence you gathered at the accident scene.

5. Pursue Legal Action

If you decide to pursue legal action, your personal injury lawyer will help you file a claim against the distracted driver’s insurance company. They will negotiate with the insurance company to ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries and any other damages resulting from the accident.

Being in an accident caused by a distracted driver can be a stressful and overwhelming experience. However, by taking these steps, you can ensure you receive the medical attention you need and the compensation you deserve. Remember to seek medical attention, contact the police, gather evidence, contact an attorney, and pursue legal action if necessary.

How Can A Distracted Driving Lawyer Help Me?

A distracted driving lawyer can help you in several ways, including:

  • Representing you in court
  • Negotiating with insurance companies
  • and helping you receive the compensation you deserve for any injuries or damages caused by a distracted driver.

Call Heintz Law Today

For Distracted Driving Awareness Month, please remember the steps you can take to keep the roads safe. If you have been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, contact Heintz Law.


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