Distracted driving occurs when a driver becomes occupied with an activity other than driving. Distracted driving includes behaviors like: texting, surfing the web, talking, personal grooming etc. Accidents resulting from distracted driving are a significant problem for drivers of all ages across the nation.
Distracted driving can be divided into three distinct categories:
Manual distractions may be combined with visual and cognitive distraction and involve the driver removing one or both hands from the wheel. They may be reaching to answer the phone, pick up an item on the floor, stubbing out a cigarette or reaching into the backseat to pick an item up or restrain a pet. Manual distractions are a significant cause of accidents, but texting while driving, according to the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA), holds the most serious potential for distracted driving accidents.
Cognitive distraction can be present with visual and manual distractions and are distractions that keep a driver’s mind from being focused on driving. These tasks include, paying attention to billboards, talking to a passenger, fatigue or emotional distress.
Visual distraction are among the most common with drivers and may also be partnered with manual and cognitive distractions. These distractions may involve rubber necking an accident, adjusting the GPS or glancing at a cellphone screen to see who is calling. If the driver’s eyes are not on the road, they run the risk of being involved in an accident.
Distracted driving endangers the driver but also other motorists and pedestrians. In fact, one in four car accidents are the result of distracted driving. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2016, 1,015 people died on South Carolina roadways.
In South Carolina, texting while driving has rapidly become one of the leading causes of injury and death on the roads. The consequences of distracted driving are so serious that former Governor Nikki Haley passed a law banning texting while driving in the state.
Top ten causes of distracted driving:
Roughly 25 percent of car accidents are a result of distracted driving. According to the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), there are ten major causes for distracted driving accidents. These are as follows:
1. Lost in thought
2. Cellphone use
3. Exterior event, object or person
5. Reaching for object in car
6. Drinking and/or eating
7. Adjusting radio or A/C
8. Adjusting other devices inside car
9. Moving objects inside car
After a car accident, it is important that you get all the medical help you require, including doctor visits and treatment. Immediately obtain legal counsel from a motor vehicle accident attorney, and do not sign any documents, or make any statements without the approval of your attorney.
If you or a family member was hurt in an accident caused by a distracted driver, contact the lawyers at Steinberg Law Firm by calling 843-720-2800 for a free consultation. After an accident caused by a distracted driver you may want to consider pursuing a lawsuit in addition to compensation from your insurance for your injuries. Contact us today to find out your legal rights, how to file a lawsuit and what to expect during the process. Our distracted driver accident attorneys are dedicated to providing legal support and representation so that you receive the compensation you deserve. We serve clients throughout Charleston, Goose Creek, Summerville and surrounding areas in South Carolina.