According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, of the traffic fatalities caused by human choice, the rate of fatal accidents caused by distracted driving increased faster in 2015 than by speeding or drunk driving. Distracted driving can involve any action that takes a motorist’s attention away from the road, but one very common source is smart phones.
Many believe that an increase in distracted driving may be a contributing factor in the rise in the number of traffic fatalities. Between 2008 and 2014, there was a general decrease in fatal crashes. However, between 2014 and 2015, the number of fatal crashes rose, and the trend continued in 2016.
Distracted driving has become such an issue that defensive driving courses are now going over how to deal with motorists who may not be paying attention to the road. Even psychologists have also started paying attention to the issue, and a recent paper was written outlining the cognitive processes needed to deal with distracted drivers.
When a negligent motorist causes an accident, it can be just as damaging as a crash caused by a drunk driver. If motorists aren’t paying attention to the road, they may run red lights or drift in their lanes when driving at high speeds. This can result in a collision that injures occupants of other vehicles, who may face lengthy periods of expensive medical care and treatment during which they are unable to earn a living. People who have been harmed in an accident caused by such a negligent driver may want to have a lawyer’s help when pursuing compensation for those losses.