Distracted Driving Can Leave You With A Lifetime Of Regrets
Looking away from the road for a second can change your life, and not in a good way. Distracted driving is quickly becoming one of the most dangerous behaviors exhibited by drivers. Yes, it’s more dangerous than driving too close to a vehicle in front of you or treating a stop sign as a suggestion.
A momentary distraction can lead to a lifetime of regret, but what qualifies as distracted driving, and how can we avoid the dangerous behavior? We’ll answer these questions so you can stay safe on the road and avoid becoming a danger to other drivers.
There’s More Than One Type of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving means you’re not paying attention to the road, and it includes texting and talking on a cell phone while you’re behind the wheel. However, this is not the only type of distraction that can lead to an avoidable accident.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has divided the different types of distracted driving into three categories.
Did you know there are laws against distracted driving? The laws vary by state, so it’s best to check with your local department of transportation. When it comes to using a handheld phone while driving, 24 states, along with the District of Columbia (Washington, DC), currently have laws in place that ban the use of cell phones while driving.
Types of Accidents Commonly Caused By Distracted Driving
Distracted driving can cause any type of car accident involving one or more vehicles. However, some types of accidents are more common when a distracted driver is behind the wheel.
Driving Out Of Your Lane
Swerving out of your lane into oncoming traffic can be disastrous for everyone involved. Head-on collisions can result in life-threatening injuries or, worse, fatalities. Even if the distracted driver only swerves off of the road, the results can be life-changing. Losing control of your vehicle can result in a rollover. Not only are you dealing with vehicle damage, but also possible severe injuries.
Failing to Stop at Red Lights and Stop Signs
Red lights and stop signs are not suggestions—state and federal laws require all drivers to come to a complete stop at stop signs. Red lights also mean stopping behind the thick white line; the only exception to the law applies to emergency vehicles. Think of police cars, fire trucks, and ambulances—even then, these vehicles proceed with caution.
Not only are you risking getting a traffic ticket for failure to stop, but you’re also significantly increasing your chances of being involved in an accident. A vehicle turning can hit the side of your car, sometimes with enough force to send it into a tailspin. Not only are side collisions possible, but you may also hit a pedestrian or cyclist crossing with the light.
You know the four-second rule when it comes to following another vehicle. The rule is a safety suggestion referring to the distance you should keep from the vehicle in front of you.
Not only is it almost impossible to gauge the distance between vehicles when you’re staring at your cellphone, but you’re also not going to notice when the lead driver suddenly stops. So before you can even put your smartphone down, you’ve hit the other vehicle’s rear bumper.
Injuries Common in Distracted Driving Accidents
Whether you’re a distracted driver or someone else involved in the accident, the resulting injuries can affect your life.
Common injuries resulting from distracted driving incidents include:
Depending on the severity of the accident, burns can also occur. Burns typically only happen if a vehicle catches on fire.
What Are Your Rights After a Distracted Driving Accident
Everyone involved in a distracted driving accident may want to speak to an attorney. If you’re the at-fault driver, an attorney will help ensure you’re only held responsible for events leading up to the accident.
For example, if the plaintiff is suing for pain and suffering, your attorney will ensure you do not end up paying for an injury that occurred in their childhood. In other words, you only pay for injuries and damage that are a direct result of the accident.
If your vehicle was in an accident caused by a distracted driver, your legal representative will ensure you receive full compensation. So, what are the types of damages potentially covered by a distracted driving lawsuit? The answer varies depending on your accident. Remember, every accident is unique.
However, some common damages include the following:
Your attorney will go over your injuries and property damage before including any claims for compensation in your case.
Working with an Attorney is Always Recommended
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Regardless of who is at fault in a distracted driving accident, it’s always best to work with an attorney. They understand the often complicated legal process you may face and will work diligently to protect your legal rights.
If you’ve been involved in an accident of any kind, reach out to a personal injury activity today to get the help you need and the compensation you deserve.