Distracted driving lawsuits stem from harm inflicted when someone operating a motor vehicle fails to give the act of driving his or her full attention. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving killed over 2,800 people in 2018 alone. Drivers themselves account for many of the lives lost, but the figure also includes helpless passengers, pedestrians, and bicyclists who fell victim to someone else's carelessness.
Distracted driving crashes also injure roughly 400,000 people each year. Some individuals involved are lucky enough to walk away with only a few cuts or bruises. Others experience significant problems, such as broken bones, head trauma, concussions, or whiplash, to name a few. They often face substantial hospital time and costly medical procedures to restore their health. Both physical and psychological pain and suffering may linger for years to come – affecting daily life and the ability to hold a job.
Types of Distracted Driving
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), three primary types of distraction exist:
- Visual: taking your eyes off the road
- Manual: taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive: taking your mind off driving
Oftentimes, an incident will involve multiple categories. For instance, finding a particular station on the radio may require thinking of the channel number (cognitive), glancing down to see the radio's current station (visual), and operating the control knob to move it to the desired place (manual).
As one might imagine, a multitude of scenarios pose a risk to causing a distracted driving accident. Common actions include eating or drinking, talking with passengers, chatting on a hands-free phone, thinking about a bad day at work, fiddling to find something in one's purse, or attending to a crying child. While these things may seem like "no big deal," their ability to pull the driver away from full attention to the road can prove deadly.
Technology has brought the world many great things, but it also has added a potent source of distraction. A driver who sends or reads a text typically takes his or her eyes off the road for five seconds. If traveling at 55 miles per hour during that brief stint, it becomes the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field with one's eyes shut!
Most states have imposed bans on texting while driving, and countless public service campaigns have urged people to take the issue seriously. Studies show, however, that while nearly 80 percent of drivers consider texting while driving a serious threat to safety, more than a third admit to reading a text or email while driving in the past 30 days, and over a fourth report typing one.
Finding a Distracted Driving Lawsuit
The action leading to a distracted driving accident may be brief, but its impact can last a lifetime. While nobody can undo the tragic event, legal professionals can help you obtain compensation to handle medical bills and other expenses.
Legal Help Services offers free evaluation of distracted driving cases. Pairing with an expert spares you the trouble of navigating the legal system alone and maximizes chances for a positive outcome. Whether the claim involves wrongful death or injuries sustained as a passenger, bicyclist, or pedestrian, you deserve to be heard.