Distracted Drivers a Danger in School Zones
Distracted driving is putting children in school zones at risk. According to a national report by Safe Kids USA, drivers' dialing their phones are six times more likely to crash, and drivers' texting are 23 times more likely to crash than an undistracted driver.
Accidents from Distracted Drivers
- According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2003 240,000 car crashes and 955 deaths occurred due to cell phone use.
- Safe Kids found that a cell phone distracted one in six cars in school zones.
- Out of 1,000 drivers, 170 were distracted with 98 distracted by cell phones.
- Distraction can be deadly for children because an attentive driver needs 104 feet to completely stop the car. If a child darts in front of a distracted driver, the time and feet it would take for the driver to stop is increased.
- A study in Canada found that the areas around schools had a much higher amount of children car crashes than other areas, with 50% of the accidents happening when children were walking to/from school.
How to Prevent Distractions
- The study found that drivers not wearing seatbelts were usually more distracted than drivers who were wearing their seat belts.
- Drivers were most distracted by cell phones but other distractions included eating/drinking, smoking, reaching for items in the car, grooming and reading.
- Drivers were also more distracted when there was more traffic, when it was later in the day, and when the speed limit was lowered.
- States now have laws prohibiting cell phone use in school zones to save students from distracted drivers. In Texas, drivers are prohibited from using cell phones in school zones.
How Kids Can Stay Safe
- Parents should make sure their children understand that drivers can be distracted, so it is important to pay attention to drivers.
- Children should know to look both ways when crossing the road, and not to run out into streets even if they don’t see a car coming right away.
- Parents should always put down the cell phone in the car, not only to save themselves a ticket but also to possibly save a life.
Contact an Experienced Child Injury Attorney
At Thomas J. Henry, we have the experience and resources to handle your child’s case. If your child has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, contact our offices immediately. We are available 24/7, nights and weekends, and we represent clients/victims all over the country.
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