The National Safety Council Declares April Distracted Driving Month
This year, the National Safety Council has declared April to be National Distracted Driving Month in the US. The hashtag campaign #CallsKill was created as part of the month to help spread information about distracted driving and how deadly it can be as a practice.
Last June, South Carolina became the 44th state to pass legislation outlawing texting and driving, which has become one of the most notorious forms of distracted driving on the roads. As we become more attached to mobile devices, which can provide us with GPS, work email, Facebook, and other distractions, we become more tempted to take our eyes off the road, if only for a few seconds. Researchers have shown, however, that texting and driving is as dangerous and deadly as drunk driving.
However, texting and driving is not the only form of distracted driving, and too many drivers are willing to overlook other distracted driving practices.
Distracted driving includes:
- Texting or emailing and driving
- Reading social media messages
- Talking on a cell phone, even with a hands-free device
- Putting on makeup
- Using a map or a GPS navigation system
- Changing the radio station or using a music player
- Talking to passengers
According to research from the CDC, 9 people are killed and 1,153 people are injured every single day in the US in a car accident involving a distracted driver. In 2013 alone, 3,154 were killed in motor vehicle crashes caused by distracted driving. That was just deaths: in 2013, 424,000 people were injured. In that year alone, 480 “nonoccupants” were killed, meaning pedestrians, cyclists, and anyone otherwise outside of the vehicle when the car accident occurred. Almost half a million people were hurt or killed because of a completely preventable type of accident.
Statistically, drivers in their 20’s are the most likely to be involved in distracted driving crashes – 27% of these drivers become distracted and caused an accident. Drivers younger than 20 are the cause of 10% of distracted driving crashes. One survey reported that 69% of drivers between the ages of 18 and 64 reported that they had used a cell phone in some fashion while driving within 30 days before they were part of the survey. Of those drivers, 31% said they had sent a text message while driving, which involves glancing away from the road for long stretches of time.
And, lest any driver believe that texting and driving is the only kind of distracted driving, or that removing one hand from the wheel is the cause of distracted driving, an in-depth study of crash statistics showed that hands-free devices like Bluetooth headsets were not significantly safer than hand-held cell phones.
If you have been injured by a distracted driver, or a loved one has been killed because of a distracted driver, you do not have to let the accident slide. As more people drive with mobile devices, it will become more important to hold drivers to a higher standard of safety.
The Strom Law Firm Defends Victims of Distracted Driving
The South Carolina personal injury attorneys at the Strom Law Firm understand that distracted driving is dangerous, and can help you find compensation for your physical and emotional suffering. We offer free case evaluations to discuss your distracted driving accident to see if you qualify for civil litigation. Contact us today. 803.252.4800