When a driver spends a single second not looking at the road, this moment of inattention is enough to change lives forever. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving caused 3,166 deaths in 2017. This number represents 9 percent of all fatal crashes in the United States.
The problem is no better in Louisiana. According to the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission, distracted driving killed 192 people in the state between 2011-2015. During the same period, an additional 26,977 people were injured in accidents caused by distracted drivers. Distracted driving is a problem that should not exist, and its often pedestrians and responsible drivers who pay the price for it.
Types of Distracted Driving
Safety advocates divide distracted driving into three categories: visual, manual, and cognitive. While these categories of distracted driving may trigger the other, they are distinct and reveal how easy it is to be distracted, even if a driver is not aware that it is happening.
A cognitive distraction includes anything that takes someone’s mind off of driving. This could be caused by a conversation with a passenger or someone on the phone. Cognitive distractions can also occur if someone is focusing on the radio too much or if they are tired and lack focus at all.
Manual distraction describes any moment a driver’s hands are not on the steering wheel of their vehicle. Examples of manual distraction include interacting with a cell phone, changing the radio station, or eating food.
A visual distraction occurs when someone takes their eyes off the road. These distractions occur in various ways, including looking at a mobile phone, glancing at signs and billboards, or glancing at the backseat for a second.
Is Distracted Driving More of an Issue Than Government Agencies Realize?
A recent report from a traffic safety startup called Zendrive suggests that distracted driving is a more significant problem than government research suggests. Zendrive uses data collected from mobile phones to determine how many people use their phones while driving. While the NHTSA estimates that 660,000 drivers use their phones during daylight hours, Zendrive’s data—after 1 billion miles of collection—believes this number is closer to 69 million drivers.
Why Distracted Driving Must Be Stopped
Distracted driving is one of the most frustrating causes of car accidents for one reason: it is completely preventable. It is not caused by faulty parts, unpredictable weather, or other unforeseen circumstances. Instead, negligent drivers choose to be distracted—whether they realize it or not. When someone causes a car accident because they were not paying attention to driving, they are responsible for the harm they cause to other people. Each year, distracted driving changes the lives of thousands of people by inflicting serious injuries which incur medical bills and and other financial hardships.
The victims of negligent drivers deserve compensation, and Tony Clayton & Associates is ready to fight for it. For over 25 years, Tony Clayton has successfully recovered hundreds of millions for accident survivors and grieving families. We know our clients are facing one of the most difficult moments of their lives, so we refuse to settle for less than they deserve.
Contact our New Orleans car accident lawyers today for a free consultation at (504) 608-3211. If we take your case, you won’t pay a fee unless we win!