While motorists across Virginia and other states in the nation understand what it means to drive safely, some drivers fail to uphold this duty. This happens when a driver is intoxicated, speeds, is reckless or is distracted while driving. While distracted driving might seem to be a lesser danger than drinking and driving or traveling recklessly down the roadways, distracted driving is a major and growing hazard on the roads.
Evidence that suggests that distracted driving is dangerous is prevalent. According to government statistics, in 2013 alone 3,154 individuals were killed in car accidents that involved a distracted driver. Moreover, it is believed that around 424,000 people were injured in a motor vehicle crash involving a distracted driver.
In order to tackle this dangerous driving trend, it is important to understand what distracted driving is. Distracted driving is when a driver does an activity that diverts the driver's attention from the primary task of driving. This occurs when the driver's eyes are diverted from the road, hands are taken off of the wheel or their mind is taken off the task of driving. Common forms of distracted driving include texting and driving, talking on a phone, eating, drinking, talking to passengers, grooming, reading a map, watching a video or adjusting a radio.
Whether it's a visual distraction or mental distraction, it is important to understand how distractions while driving could impact the driver's ability to drive safely. Moreover, drivers should understand that distracted driver could easily be the cause of a car accident, resulting in serious criminal and civil liabilities.
Those harmed by a distracted driver should know that they may have recourses available to them. A personal injury claim could help an injured victim recover compensation, covering expenses such as medical bills, lost wages and other related damages and losses.
Source: Distraction.gov, "What is distracted driving?" accessed Jan. 4, 2016