As experienced car accident lawyers, we have represented many personal injuries and wrongful death clients who have needed our services because of accidents involving texting while driving. The auto accident attorneys at our law firm present this information in the hope of dissuading you from texting while driving.
Texting is a form of distracted driving
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 16 people are killed and 1,300 people are injured daily in auto accidents involving a distracted driver. Distracted driving is driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving. CDC statistics unequivocally show that distracting activities increase the chance of a motor vehicle crash and the need for a car accident lawyer.
There are three main types of distraction:
Visual — those that take your eyes off the road
Manual — those that require you to take your hands off the wheel
Cognitive — those that take your mind off what you are doing
Distracted driving activities include things like using a cell phone, texting, eating, drinking, and talking with passengers. While any of these distractions can endanger the driver and others, texting while driving is especially dangerous because it combines all three types of distraction. Texting takes the driver’s attention away from driving more frequently and for longer periods than other distractions, increasing the risk of an accident.
Texting and auto accident statistics
As these statistics indicate, texting and driving do not mix:
A study by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company revealed that of the 1,200 drivers surveyed, 19 percent admitted to text messaging while driving.
CDC statistics show that more than a third of all drivers under age 24 regularly text while driving.
CDC statistics also show that texting is considerably more dangerous than driving while intoxicated. Texting is six times more likely than drunk driving to cause an accident.
The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) found that the act of sending or receiving a text message took drivers’ eyes off their driving for 4.6 out of each 6 seconds. This makes texting the most distracting of all cell-phone-related tasks.
VTTI statistics also show that texting while driving is at least 23 times more likely to get a trucker into an accident than non-distracted driving.
Texting and teen drivers
CDC statistics show that drivers under 20 years of age are the most likely to drive while distracted:
Nearly 13 percent of those under 20 admit to texting while driving.
Nearly 34 percent of teens ages 16 and 17 admit that they send and respond to text messages while driving.
Model safe behavior
Keep in mind that the driving habits of teenagers are highly influenced by the driving habits of adults. Since the CDC indicates that 48 percent of teenagers between ages 12 and 17 report that they have been in a car when the driver was engaged in text messaging, we are clearly not providing a model of safe driving to our children.
Particularly when your children are learning to drive, pay extra attention to your own driving behavior. Driving habits they might not have consciously noticed in the past now readily capture their attention when they are in the process of learning to drive.
Legal help from auto accident lawyers
When you are the victim in an auto accident, whether as a result of texting or of any other type of negligent driver behavior, call us today to schedule a free consultation with an auto accident lawyer.