The Fatal Dangers of Distracted Driving

Grady Flattmann
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Local Covington, Louisiana attorney focusing 100% on personal injury matters.

Did you know that distracted driving accounts for about 25% of all motor vehicle crash fatalities?  Nine people in the U.S. are killed each day as a result of crashes involving a distracted driver.  Wow. 

Of that statistic, teens have been the largest age group involved.  Car crashes are the number one killer of teens in the U.S.  Take that in for a moment. 

Types Of Distracted Driving

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are three main types of distracted driving:

  • Visual:  taking your eyes off the road;
  • Manual:  taking your hands off the wheel; and
  • Cognitive:  taking your mind off of driving.

Examples of visual distracted driving include using a cell phone, texting, glancing at kids in the back seat, etc.  Examples of manual distracted driving include holding the wheel with your knees while trying to chow down on fast food or reaching for something in the back seat.  Cognitive distracted driving (when your mind is not focused on driving) is just as dangerous and leads to slowed reaction. 

Confession Time

All of us have probably been guilty of at least one type of distracted driving.  Sometimes, we can be guilty of all three types in one trip. 

Take this example:  The phone rings next to us on the passenger seat.  We glance toward it for a moment to see who it is (visual distraction).  It must be important so we pick up the phone and answer.  We need to write down what the caller is saying, so we grab a pen and paper from the center console (manual distraction).  Now, we are totally focused on our phone call and not on driving (cognitive distraction). 

Combating Distracted Driving

Here are a few tips for combating distracted driving:

  1. Put your phone on airplane mode when you are driving, especially short distances.
  2. Ask someone else to check your phone if it rings or dings.
  3. Connect your device to your car.
  4. Remind your kids that you have to pay attention to driving (have them remind you).
  5. Leave mental reminders to yourself to focus your mind on driving.  For instance, place a sticky note in your cup holder or get a special medal to hang from your mirror. 

Be safe driving out there!  If you have been a victim of distracted driving, give us a call today to schedule a free CRASH COURSE.  Whether your accident happened in St. Tammany Parish (Covington, Mandeville, Abita Springs, Bogalusa, Franklinton, Folsom) or anywhere in the New Orleans Metro area, we are here for you.  Contact us today at (985) 590-6182