Do you use your cell phone while you are driving? If you can honestly answer that question with a firm “no,” you are squarely in the minority of American drivers, a new study suggests. With cellular phones and mobile devices having been a part of our lives for more than two decades, nearly everyone is aware of the dangers they present while behind the wheel. For a variety of reasons, however, we cannot seem to put our devices down and focus on the road.
According to a study recently conducted by Zendrive, a driving analytics company, U.S. drivers use their phones in some way on 88 percent of the trips they take. Think about that for a moment. These numbers mean that only about one trip in every ten is completed without the driver using his or her cell phone or mobile divorce. Even more telling was the scope of the research; Zendrive analyzed data collected from more than 3 million drivers covering some 5.6 billion miles of driving. The study’s findings suggest that the issue is not limited to a particular demographic or age group—nearly everyone uses their phone while driving.
The research also revealed that the average driver is on his or her phone—including checking messages and apps, not just making or receiving calls—for about three and half minutes per hour of driving or roughly 6 percent of the time. Highway accidents can develop in a matter seconds, if not faster, so any time spent with eyes off the road constitutes a serious danger for everyone involved.
Federal estimates place the number of distracted driving fatalities at around 3,500 annually—which averages to about nine deaths every day. While not all distracted driving accidents are caused by cell phones, mobile devices play a role in about a quarter of all crashes. Many states, including Connecticut, have enacted laws that make hand-held use of mobile phone illegal, but the problems persist.
As cell technology has evolved, the popularity of text messaging has exploded, leading to even more hazards on the nation’s roadways. Experts say that it takes about five seconds, on average, to read or send a quick text message. By comparison, safety officials indicate that the maximum amount of time that a driver can safely look away from the road is about two seconds. At highway speeds, a vehicle will travel at least the length of a football field in the time it takes to read or respond to a text.
Distracted Driving Accidents
Even if you take all of the appropriate precautions and avoid checking your phone while you are driving, you cannot control the actions of the drivers around you, and accidents will sometimes happen. If you are injured due to another driver being distracted by his or her cell phone, he or she may be liable for your injuries. Contact an experienced Hartford personal injury lawyer to discuss your options. Call [[phone1]] for a free consultation at Woolf Law Firm, LLC today.