April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, a time to remind motorists of the dangers associated with distracted driving as well as educate drivers on what qualifies as a distraction. As such, Thomas J. Henry will be publishing a number of blogs focused on distracted driving risks, repercussions, and prevention as well as tips on how to discuss the dangers of distracted driving with your children and peers.
However, before we dive into the details, we have to address a (seemingly) simple question: What is distracted driving?
What Is Distracted Driving?
While most motorists associate distracted driving as using a cell phone behind the wheel, the truth is that any activity that diverts a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving is considered distracted driving.
Additionally, the United States of Transportation recognizes three unique types of driver distraction:
- Visual – taking your eyes off the road
- Manual – taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive – taking your mind off the action at hand
It is also important to remember that an action may not be limited to a single type of driver distraction; in fact, most actions involve at least two types of distraction. For example, talking on a cell phone involves manual and cognitive distractions, and texting actually involves all three types of distraction.
What Are Some Examples of Driver Distractions?
Although the advent and increased popularity of smartphones has lead to an increase in distracted driving crashes, there are other popular activities that people take part in while driving that could cause a serious accident.
- Using a cell phone
- Eating and drinking
- Talking to passengers
- Reading, including maps
- Using a PDA or navigation system
- Watching a video
- Changing the radio station, CD, or Mp3 player
- Applying makeup
- Reaching for an item in your center console or another area of the vehicle
What Can I Do to Prevent Distracted Driving?
Like most dangerous behaviors, there is not true way to eradicate distracted driving. However, by understanding the risks of distracted driving and relaying a message of responsible driving to friends and family, you can be part of the solution.
It is our hope that the blogs we publish over the next three weeks will inspire you to make a difference as well as equip you with the tools and knowledge needed to do it.
What If I Have Questions About My Own Distracted Driving Accident?
Dealing with traffic accidents is never easy – add in complicating factors like driver distraction, commercial vehicle regulations, or driver intoxication, and you are likely to have more questions than answers for the authorities and insurance companies.
Having an attorney who is experienced in handling complicated automobile accidents can help ensure your rights are preserved and that you receive the financial compensation needed to cover the costs of your injuries, vehicle repairs, and other damages.
If you or a loved one have been injured in an auto accident due to the actions of a distracted driver, you may be entitled to compensation. Our experienced auto accident lawyers are available 24/7, nights and weekends to evaluate your claim. Our firm has offices in Corpus Christi, San Antonio, Austin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. We can meet you wherever you reside, whether it be at home, at your workplace, or in the hospital. Contact us today for a free case review.