What Are the Most Common Types of Distractions While Driving?

Distracted driving is one of the deadliest causes of traffic accidents across the United States. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 3,000 people died due to distracted driving accidents in a recent year.

Distracted drivers must face the consequences of their actions, which means paying financial compensation to their victims. Having an attorney working for you is the best way to ensure you get the money you need to recover after an accident.

Taking your eyes off the road for even a second can lead to a severe car accident. To learn more about distracted driving accidents and common types of distractions while driving, continue reading and consult with a car accident lawyer.

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What Is Distracted Driving?

Any activity that takes your attention or eyes off the road is distracted driving. Multi-tasking while driving is dangerous, and drivers should never do it.

Distracted driving can include:

  • Operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Texting and driving.
  • Looking at your GPS.
  • Eating.
  • Talking on the phone even with Bluetooth.
  • Disciplining children.
  • Anything else that can cause you to take your hands off the wheel or eyes off the road.

Statistics Regarding the Facts About Distracted Driving

Here are some facts about distracted driving

  • About 20 percent of victims of distracted driving accidents over the years were outside of a vehicle when the accident happened, including pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists.
  • Nearly 3,000 people lose their lives in distracted driving accidents every year across the country.
  • Almost 400,000 people suffer injuries in distracted driving accidents each year.

Types of Distracted Driving

There are different categories of distracted driving accidents. Distracted driving accidents happen anytime a driver takes their attention off the road. The three categories of distracted driving accidents include:

Cognitive Distractions

Cognitive distractions happen when a driver takes their attention off driving. These can occur when a driver texts and drives, answers emails while driving, does their makeup, eats breakfast on the way to work, or is otherwise distracted. Ironically, a driver who is distracted by a traffic accident might cause another and potentially more severe accident. Drivers should remain focused for the entire time they are operating a vehicle.

Visual Distractions

Visual distractions occur when drivers take their eyes off the road. A driver’s eyes should remain on the road ahead. A distracted driving accident can happen if the driver looks at the rearview mirror for too long.

Manual Distractions

Manual distractions involve drivers taking their hands off the wheel. Even a moment of losing control can cause a severe accident. Anytime a driver is behind the wheel, both hands should remain on the wheel.

Some Distractions are Particularly Dangerous

Importantly, some activities involve multiple types of distractions, making them especially hazardous. For example, when a driver texts, they are thinking about their message, looking at their phone, and using their hands. If you see a driver engaging in this type of behavior, get as far away as possible.

What Should I Do if I Am Hurt by a Distracted Driver?

If you are the victim of a distracted driver, you should ensure that your physical well-being is taken care of along with each of your passengers. Taking the following steps can protect your physical health and legal rights after an accident.

Get Medical Help Immediately

Get medical attention immediately. The most important thing after an accident is to ensure you are okay. Even if you do not believe your injuries require a visit to the emergency department, you should see a doctor anyway. You can be suffering from internal injuries that only a physical examination can reveal.

A medical examination can also help you build your case. Immediate medical attention can help you connect the accident as the cause of your harm. Accident plaintiffs must prove that the accident caused their injuries. This can be difficult to prove, especially if the other driver’s insurance company wants to disprove your claims. Getting contemporaneous medical attention after a car crash gives insurance companies less room to argue something else caused your injuries.

Avoid Speaking About the Accident

After an accident, in addition to avoiding conversation with opposing insurance companies, you should refrain from posting anything on social media. Every statement you make after a car crash can help build up or tear down your case. In the aftermath of an injury, remember to post wisely.

Speak to An Attorney Immediately

After getting medical attention, speak to an experienced car accident attorney. Time is of the essence when it comes to car crash cases. You should not talk to anyone, including the other driver’s insurance company, without securing your counsel. Your attorney will help you understand how to file a claim or lawsuit and get the money you need after an accident.

Are Certain Drivers More Likely to Engage in Distractions Behind the Wheel?

Anyone can make a mistake behind the wheel. However, despite each of us having the ability to make a mistake like taking our eyes off the road, there are some groups that tend to be at greater risk of causing these accidents.

Some of those groups include: 

  • According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) survey, student drivers regularly admit to texting, driving, and checking their emails while driving.
  • Drivers under 20 years old are more likely to get into accidents due to distracted drivers than other groups. Distracted driving accidents represent nine percent of all accidents reported in this age group.

Are Distracted Driving Accidents Preventable?

Distracted driving is completely preventable, and these accidents do not have to happen. There are many activist groups that fight to raise awareness and end distracted driving for good.

Community Activist Programs to End Distracted Driving

Many parent groups have begun to respond to the epidemic of distracted driving. They tend to provide information about the need to end driving habits that often cause distracted driving accidents.

Some of the groups that focus on ending distracted driving include: 

  • UNITE Arrive Alive Tour
  • Salt & Light Productions
  • Stop Texting and Driving Distracted (STANDD)
  • Street Safe
  • End Distracted Driving
  • Teens Against Distracted Driving
  • Safe America Foundation
  • Stay Alive Just Drive
  • It Can Wait

While these groups do wonderful work, it does not replace the effectiveness of having personal conversations with people who are familiar with the driver. In particular, parents of teenage drivers can have critical conversations with their children.

Parents should always encourage safe driving and model the behavior themselves. Teaching good driving behaviors can help prevent accidents in the future.

Teenagers are influenced by each other. Teenagers who learn the correct and safe driving techniques will positively influence their peers leading to fewer accidents caused by distracted driving.

What Damages Are Available After a Car Accident?

You may be entitled to compensation if you have suffered an injury in a car accident. Many accident victims are unaware of what damages are recoverable after an accident. The following are the types of damages available after a car crash.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are tangible losses sustained by a victim in a car crash. These losses are usually easy to recognize and prove, at least for the most part. As an accident victim, you may not know the extent of your economic damages. An attorney can help you recognize and pursue all these losses.

Examples include: 

  • Current and future medical bills.
  • Current and future lost income.
  • Loss of earning capacity includes the loss of the ability to return to work in the industry you worked in before the accident.
  • Loss of consortium.
  • Loss of companionship.
  • The cost of hiring domestic help is if you can no longer cook, clean, dress yourself, or care for children or pets.

Non-economic Damages

Non-economic damages are harder to prove. This damage category represents an accident victim’s intangible losses after a crash. Many accident victims do not know what they may be entitled to recover in this category of damages. A skilled attorney can help you identify your losses and help you pursue full recovery.

Examples of non-economic damages include: 

  • Loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Decreased quality of life.
  • Disability and disfigurement.

How Can An Attorney Help Me?

Car accident lawyers help victims protect their legal right to recover compensation after a crash. Attorneys advocate for their clients, ensuring you get the recovery you deserve.

To help you win your accident case, you’re your car accident attorney may: 

  • Field correspondence from medical billing departments. After an accident, many victims get phone calls, emails, and letters from bill collectors related to hospital bills. Getting contacted by agencies that say you owe them money is stressful. Your legal team can help alleviate that stress and help you focus on your physical recovery.
  • Connect you with the medical care that you need. Often, doctors do not want to treat accident victims. These cases are undesirable because doctors do not want to get involved with legal proceedings that have the potential to last for months or years.
  • Build your accident case. They will work with you on effectively presenting your case to an insurance company or jury. Your lawyer will ensure you do not downplay your injuries and get the money you need to recover financially.
  • Negotiate a settlement with insurance companies. Dealing with a large insurance company on your own leaves you vulnerable to tactics adjusters use to avoid paying settlements to victims. Insurance companies use common tactics: shifting blame to the victim, offering quick lowball settlements, trapping you into a statement, etc.
  • Conduct an independent investigation into your accident. After the crash, the police will compile a report, and each insurance company will investigate the accident. Your attorney will use each report as a starting point for their own investigation. The legal team you choose may visit the accident scene, review your medical records, speak to witnesses, review property damages, and collect other data to help understand the cause of the accident and begin building your case.
  • File a lawsuit against the defendant. Filing a lawsuit and an insurance claim can get complicated. An experienced accident attorney can help you comply with applicable rules to ensure the court does not dismiss your case on technical grounds.
  • Handle all the legal tasks related to your case. You may have many questions as you pursue a car accident case. There is a lot of misinformation online that can confuse and frustrate you. Rely on the experience of an experienced attorney to help you get the compensation you need.

What if I Cannot Afford An Attorney?

Many accident victims are afraid to pursue a lawsuit after a car accident because they do not think they have the money to pay for an attorney. Fortunately, many civil accident lawyers work on a contingency fee basis.

A contingency fee is a payment arrangement that allows a client to defer payment for legal services until the end of representation. Personal injury attorneys who work on contingency will take a percentage of the final settlement amount once you receive it. In most cases, victims will not owe their attorney anything if they do not recover a settlement or award.

Contact An Attorney Today

Tatiana Boohoff, Lawyer for Car Accident cases near Tampa area.
Tatiana Boohoff, Car Accident Attorney in Tampa

In the event that you have suffered injuries because of a distracted driver, you should call a personal injury lawyerin Tampa as soon as you can. In many instances, victims can obtain compensation for all of their accident-related losses, including their past and future medical expenses, lost income, property damage, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.

Request A Free Consultation Today!

Boohoff Law, P.A. — Auto Accident Lawyers – Tampa Office

829 W Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd,
Tampa, FL 33603
Phone: (813) 725-5606

April 17, 2023
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