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Top 5 Causes of Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is any activity that diverts a driver’s attention from the road. When a driver’s focus is taken away from the task of driving even for just a few seconds, they’re putting themselves, their passengers and others on the road at risk. Distracted driving results in 391,000 injuries and 3,500 fatalities each year in the United States. It’s also the second leading cause of traffic-related crashes in Texas.

The following are among the top five causes of distracted driving accidents:

  1. Using a cell phone — Talking on a cellphone while operating a vehicle can cause significant cognitive distraction and create a high risk of potential for injury or fatality. Research has revealed that whether the driver is using a voice-to-text program, a hands-free device or holds the phone in their hand, their ability to drive safely is impacted. In addition, it is illegal in Texas to read, write or send a text message while operating a vehicle.
  2. Eating and drinking — Eating a snack or drinking a beverage while operating a vehicle are two common causes of driver distraction. Both activities take a driver’s hands off the wheel and their eyes off the road, increasing the chances that they will lose control of the vehicle.
  3. Grooming — Brushing hair, applying cosmetics or otherwise grooming oneself while behind the wheel takes a driver’s attention away from observing their surroundings. A driver who engages in grooming may fail to notice hazards in the road, oncoming vehicles or sudden lane changes.
  4. Adjusting the radio — When a driver adjusts the radio in their vehicle, they must take a hand off the wheel and their eyes off the road in order to do so. Listening to the radio is considered a minimal cognitive distraction but can still impede a driver’s ability to hear events on the roadway, such as another driver sounding their horn.
  5. Interacting with passengers — Many distracted driving accidents are caused by drivers talking with other vehicle occupants. Since conversations can require mental focus, they can take a driver’s mind off the task of operating a vehicle.

Fatigue while driving can also be a high-risk distraction. When a driver operates a vehicle while drowsy, their reaction time and ability to sustain attention substantially decrease. In fact, statistics show that drowsy drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a car accident.

If you suffered injuries in a car accident caused by another driver’s negligence, it’s essential to contact a personal injury attorney who will fight for your right to compensation. Located in Cleburne, the Texas-based Leland Reinhard Law Firm is committed to providing reliable representation for car accident victims. Call 817-645-5400 or contact me online to schedule a free consultation.