April may signal the beginning of warmer weather around Baltimore County, MD, but it is also time for calling attention to a troubling trend in the U.S. — distracted driving awareness month. The National Safety Council (NSC) has named April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month to point out how certain activities can lead to deadly accidents. Unfortunately, though many motorists know the dangers and the laws, many still engage in acts that put others on the road at risk.
If you were hurt in a crash involving distracted driving, you should talk to an experienced auto accident attorney about your rights. Some important information may also be useful.
Statistics on Distracted Driving
A National Highway Traffic Safety Administration example is infamous for showing the dangers of texting while driving. It takes a driver an average of five seconds to read or write a text message. Traveling at a speed of 55 mph, this is the equivalent of driving while blindfolded for the length of a football field. Additional statistics are informative:
- Every day in the U.S., nine people are killed and around 100 are injured by distracted driving;
- Reports show that distractions are a contributing factor in 14% of all fatal collisions;
- Estimates reveal that around 660,000 drivers are using their phones while driving at any given time of day.
Types of Distracted Driving that Cause Accidents
Part of the NSC’s awareness initiative is emphasizing the wide range of activities that constitute distracted driving. Texting while driving gets a lot of attention, but there are huge risks any time a motorist:
- Talks on the phone or surfs the internet;
- Captures images or video;
- Eats or drinks while driving;
- Adjusts the radio or interacts with a GPS device;
- Grooms or applies makeup; and,
- Engages in any other activities that take attention away from operating the vehicle.
Your Rights as a Victim of a Distracted Driving Accident
Negligence is the basis of most auto collision claims, and one essential element is proving the other driver was careless. Distracted driving is a form of carelessness that provides strong support for your claim for compensation. Another important element is showing that the distracted driving was a direct cause of the accident. If successful, you may be able to recover compensation for such losses as:
- Medical bills for treatment of your injuries;
- Lost wages for any time you miss work;
- Pain and suffering;
- Scarring and disfigurement;
- Losses that affect your personal relationships with your spouse, family, and other loved ones; and,
- Other damages that depend on the specific details of your case.
Get a Lawyer’s Help with Distracted Driving Accident Claims
Though fault may seem obvious in a distracted driving collision, it is still important to retain an experienced attorney to assist with your claim. Insurance companies can be difficult to work with regardless of whether your case seems iron-clad. For more information, please contact attorney Michael A. Freedman to set up a consultation. We represent auto accident victims throughout Baltimore County, and we are happy to assist with your claim.