When you think of distracted driving, you probably think about people texting or talking on their cellphones behind the wheel. Those are certainly among the most dangerous activities a person can do while driving. In fact, a recent Virginia Tech Transportation Institute study shows texting is the most hazardous thing you can do behind the wheel. The study also showed that about 80 percent of motor vehicle accidents occur because a driver is distracted in some way.
While many drivers are getting the message about texting and driving, there are still other things that may take your attention from the road, even for a few seconds. You may remember a scary moment when your car drifted out of its lane because you were preoccupied while driving. If you weren’t texting, what were you doing?
Your car may be a distraction
While vehicles improve in safety and technology, many times that advanced technology is too enticing to ignore. Cars have navigation programs, entertainment systems, climate control and communication devices intended to make your drive safer and more convenient. However, you may not be able to manipulate those systems without looking away from the road, sometimes for a prolonged period.
If you find yourself racing from place to place, you may also end up grabbing food on the go. Not surprisingly, one study showed that eating while driving doubles your chances of being in an accident. The most dangerous foods to have behind the wheel include:
- Hot liquids
- Greasy food
- Gooey food
- Food that requires two hands to eat, such as cereal
Of course, if you’re eating on the run, it may be because you are taking your children from one activity to another. Studies show that children, especially younger children who can’t understand the concentration necessary for driving, often cause parents to take their eyes off the road. Whether they are arguing, misbehaving, crying or needing your attention, allowing your children to distract you while you are driving can be dangerous.
When you are the victim of a distracted driver
Even if you do your best to stay focused on the highway, there’s still a chance that someone else will become distracted and cause an accident. Motor vehicle accidents can cost thousands of dollars in auto repairs, lost wages and other expenses. This does not even take into account the price of your injuries.
If you suffered injuries because of another driver’s negligence, you have every right to contact an attorney for assistance in pursuing a legal claim. Whether you need help negotiating with an insurance company or seeking recovery for you pain and suffering from the person responsible for your accident, having an attorney will ensure the best possible outcome for your circumstances.