Distracted driving has led to 80% of the accidents on the roads in New York. The statistic is according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Board for the calendar year of 2017. Distracted driving covers a lot of ground, including driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Distracted driving also includes driving while they are on their cell phone or other electronic equipment while driving.
New York State has passed laws to make it explicitly illegal to operate any handheld electronic device while driving. However, there are plenty of things in the car that is not illegal that can cause you to lose focus while driving, and anything that enables you to lose focus for even a couple of seconds can have disastrous results.
Distractions can be anything from the Radio to screaming kids or even driving under the influence.
Radios have been in cars since 1930. In 1930 there weren’t that many stations, cars were not as fast, and the roads were not nearly as busy. Even something as innocuous as your car radio can cause you to become distracted. You may become distracted enough not to notice that the truck in front of you has come to a stop. You might not realize you have come to a red light, and a pedestrian is now crossing in front of you.
Most cars have Global Positioning Satellite (GPS), and even if the vehicle doesn’t have it, or you don’t have GPS, smartphones all have it with applications like Google Maps and Waze. Waze will not allow a driver to operate the app while the car is moving at full speed, or it will try to stop you by asking if you are the driver or the passenger. Trying to set program a GPS while driving is hazardous as you are not only looking away from the road; you are concentrating specifically on the GPS. Within a second, you have lost the picture of what is going on around you. At that point, you are an accident waiting to happen.
Distractions can be due to things we take for granted, like a pet or groceries.
Other common distractions are fighting kids, pets that are not secured in a crate, and having free reign to jump into the front seat or groceries that you placed in the seat or floor beside you, which fell over with the first turn made out of the parking lot. Now you are looking for the can of soup, which has quite possibly lodged itself under your brake pedal.
Driving is a serious responsibility that many people take for granted. When you are driving, you have to make sure that you and your passengers are safe. You also have a duty to the drivers and pedestrians around you. Drivers and pedestrians will decide what to do based on what they expect other people to be doing. People base expectations on the legal rules of the road as well as best practices. Expectations include using a directional to warn people of an impending move or to maintain a constant speed within your lane.
There are Serious Consequences for causing an accident when you are distracted.
If you are distracted by anything from driving drunk to texting to arguing with your children in the back seat about who touched who, you are not going to be able to operate as others expect you. If that distraction results in an accident with injuries, you can be found negligent and liable both legally and civilly. You can pay for your negligence with your freedom and your money.
Call the Law Offices of Marc S. Albert for a free consultation.
If you have been injured in a car accident, you need representation from an attorney with vast experience with car accident cases. You need to call an attorney who can take on the insurance companies and fight for you in and out of court. Call the Law Office of Marc Albert for your free initial consultation.