Next time you have to beep your horn at the driver ahead of you, who is still sitting at a stop at a green light, you’ll probably assume they were looking down at their phone — and you’ll probably be right. This is one of the most common distractions that you’re going to see on the road. As frustrating as it is in this situation, you’re actually lucky that it didn’t happen while that person’s car was in motion.
Phones are still causing accidents
The truth is that texting often causes serious car accidents for drivers of all ages, on all types of roads. Those on the interstate drift out of their lanes; those on country roads fail to navigate corners and run stop signs. Even drivers on relatively safe one-way roads can plow into traffic that has backed up ahead of them, not even seeing the cars until it is too late.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration calls texting the single distraction that is the most alarming. Part of it is that texting causes people to look away from the road entirely, so it’s more severe than something like listening to music or talking to a passenger. Part of it is also just how much it happens. Most people have their phones with them 100% of the time that they’re not sleeping, so even the “safest” drivers have probably looked at those phones on the road.
Though distracted driving has been a known issue now for years, that knowledge alone hasn’t put an end to the problem. As recently as 2018, phone use on its own took 4,637 lives. That’s not even counting other types of distractions, such as talking to passengers or caring for children. It’s clear that more awareness is needed if we’re to curb this epidemic.
Your options after a wreck with a distracted driver
If you get into a car accident with a driver who is texting or otherwise distracted, you may have a right to financial compensation. Be sure you know what options exist and how to protect your interests against the insurance company. An attorney may be able to help.