Always remember to concentrate on the road and practice safe driving habits
In Kentucky and throughout the U.S., traffic safety advocates have designated April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Distracted driving is a common cause of car accidents that result in severe injury or death. For instance, in 2019, crashes involving distracted drivers resulted in more than 3,100 fatalities.
Throughout the rest of this month, efforts will be made to spread awareness about the dangers of distracted driving while local law enforcement officials beef up enforcement.
EndDD.org is one organization that has committed itself to reduce crashes caused by distracted driving. After the tragic passing of Casey Feldman, a 21-year-old who was killed by a distracted driver, Feldman's parents started the Casey Feldman Foundation and EndDD.org. With the foundation and website, Casey's parents hope to bring an end to distracted driving so no one else has to suffer the same kind of tragic loss they did.
“I never thought it could happen to my child, but it can happen to you and it can happen to your children,” Joel Feldman said in a recent news interview. “Just like when you look at somebody, hear somebody’s driven drunk, you think, ‘Oh my God!’ We want it to be the same for distracted driving and I think we can get there.”
Types of distractions
Distracted driving happens when an activity takes a driver's attention away from the task of driving. Safety experts categorize distractions into 3 main types: Manual, Visual, and Cognitive.
- Manual distractions: These are distractions that happen when a driver physically moves their hands away from the steering wheel. Eating, changing music, holding a cell phone, or reaching for something in another seat are all examples of manual distractions.
- Visual distractions: This type of distraction happens when a driver takes their eyes off the road. Examples of visual distractions include looking at an electronic device, self-grooming, and rubbernecking.
- Cognitive distractions: These distractions happen when something causes a motorists' mind to wander away from the task of driving. Experiencing different moods/emotions, daydreaming, chatting with a passenger, and deep thinking are all examples of cognitive distractions.
One of the most common and most dangerous forms of distracted driving is texting. Texting and driving falls under all three types of distractions and can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. According to studies from the University of Utah, a texting driver is just as dangerous as someone driving with a BAC of 0.08 percent.
The key takeaway is reading or sending a text message can wait. Don't take the risk.
How to prevent distracted driving
We can all do our part to avoid distracted driving and make our roads safer.
As a driver, there are a couple of ways to prevent yourself from driving distracted. There are applications and features available on cell phones that can eliminate the temptation to grab your phone while driving. These features will stop notifications from appearing on your screen, get rid of that distraction, and let you focus on your driving. You can also put your phone in the glovebox, trunk, or somewhere else that's out of reach so you won't be tempted to use it while you're driving.
As a passenger, speak up if the person driving you is distracted. Politely but firmly ask them to focus on the road ahead.
As a parent, set a good example as a driver for your children. Teens whose parents drive distracted are 2 to 4 times as likely to also drive distracted, and distracted driving is one of the top contributors to crashes involving younger drivers.
Talk to an experienced Louisville car accident attorney
We can all do our part to prevent distracted driving, but keep in mind that there's only so much you can do to keep yourself from getting into a wreck. At the end of the day, your safety largely lies in the hands of other drivers, and far too often, drivers operate their vehicles recklessly or negligently.
If you were injured or a loved one died in a crash involving a distracted driver in Kentucky, you have recourse through the civil justice system.
At the Whaley Law Firm, we know what it takes to win tough cases, and we know how to play hardball with the insurance companies. Don't let an insurance adjuster pressure you into accepting a lowball settlement offer that doesn't even come close to covering all your damages. Let an experienced Louisville car accident lawyer deal with them instead and fight for every dollar you deserve.
To find out more about how we can help you, contact us today for a free consultation.