Cell phones have become a main part of our daily lives. However, many people have a challenging time putting their phones down when they are behind the wheel, which is why distracted driving has become one of the most common causes of car accidents in the United States. Under California Vehicle Code Section 23123.5, it is illegal to write, send, or read a text-based communication while you are operating a vehicle.
What is Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving is defined as any activity that takes your eyes away from the road, takes your hands off the steering wheel, and takes your attention away from the main task of operating a vehicle. The most alarming type of distraction is texting.
In fact, typing or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for five seconds. Thus, if you are going at least 55 miles per hour (mph) while texting, it would be like driving the entire length of a football field blind.
Distracted Driving Statistics in the United States
According to a 2018 report on distracted driving by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 2,900 people were killed, and an estimated 40,000 people were injured by distracted drivers. Eight percent of fatal accidents, 15 percent of collisions involving injury, and 14 percent of all police-reported collisions in 2018 were reported as distracted driving accidents.
The U.S. Department of Transportation says cell phones are involved in 1.6 million traffic crashes annually. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) claim that approximately eight people are killed in the U.S. in reported crashes involving a distracted driver.
Who is Most at Risk of Texting & Driving?
Young adult drivers and teen drivers are the most at risk of distracted driving. Since these motorists lack the driving skills and experience compared to their older counterparts, texting while driving can be extremely dangerous for them.
Unfortunately, this demographic is also known for their constant cellphone usage. According to a 2019 survey from the CDCD said that 39 percent of high school students admitted to texting or e-mailing while driving at least once in the past 30 days. Furthermore, students who texted and e-mailed while driving were also likely to engage in other risky driving behaviors, such as not wearing a seat belt or driving after consuming alcohol.
What Happens If a Distracted Driver Causes a Car Accident?
Texting while driving or otherwise distracted driving is considered negligent and reckless behavior. If a person was texting while driving right after a crash, the distracted driver will be held liable for causing the collision.
If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident in Palm Springs, CA, or within the surrounding area, including Palm Desert, Cathedral City, Rancho Mirage, Indio, Indian Wells,call Barry Regar APLC at (760) 440-5643 or fill out our online contact form today to schedule a free consultation. You do not pay anything unless we win your case!