Don’t App and Drive: Smartphones Take Distracted Driving to New Level
In 2014, ten percent of all traffic fatalities were attributed to distracted driving. Today, distracted driving is challenging drunk driving as the cause of the most traffic fatalities in the United States – and drunk driving causes about one-third of all deaths on the road.
Drivers that send or read text messages while driving are 23 times more likely to crash compared to other drivers. However, texting is definitely not the only issue that smartphones present to drivers.
Because of the vast number of apps and games now on smartphones, the devices present a new problem. In a survey conducted in 2015, one-third of all drivers admitted to texting while driving. Now, a new study indicates that 68 percent of teens admit to using smartphone apps while driving.
Some teens honestly do not think that what they are doing is inhibiting their driving. They use music and GPS apps regularly and think nothing of it, comparing them to the radio or looking briefly at a map.
The truth is, however, that any activity that diverts your attention from the road is a distraction and should be avoided. Accidents can happen after even just moments of distraction, with the average accident occurring three seconds after a distraction occurs.
Dealing with the Distracted Driver Dilemma
Some lawmakers are attempting to address the problem from a legal standpoint by making viewing your phone while driving illegal, but that may not be enough. Experts indicate that driving-mode technologies (which prevent the driver from using their technology extensively, or at all, while driving) should be mandated on smartphones and other electronics.
One of the best ways to prevent the distraction of a smartphone is to place it out of reach and turn off the sound, so it does not tempt you while you drive.
Distracted drivers are dangerous. If you or someone you love was injured in a car accident with someone that you think was driving while distracted, you might have a legal case. Speak with one of our Milwaukee automotive accident lawyers for more information.