Texting and Car Accidents
Texting is one of the most dangerous activities drivers can do in the car and yet 44% of all drivers do it. According to the National Security Council, close to half of all drivers text while in the car. This hazardous and reckless activity has serious consequences. Texting and car accidents are deeply intertwined, with cell phone usage while driving leading to over 1.6 million crashes each year. If you have been injured in a car accident that was the result of a driver texting, consider reaching out to an experienced personal injury lawyer for support. At Chuck Franklin Law, Chuck works closely with his clients to provide them with the support they need. Chuck always answers the phone directly and can be reached at (480) 545-0700.
The Connection Between Texting and Car Accidents
Texting is so common in today’s day and age, that it is not a surprise that many people think it is a harmless activity to do while driving – after all, everyone multitasks. However, when people text while driving, they are not multitasking; their brain switches attention from one activity, driving, to the other, texting. This leads to what is known as distracted driving. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are three types of driving distractions. These are:
- Visual, or when the driver takes their eyes off the road.
- Manual, or when the driver removes their hands from the wheel.
- Cognitive, or when the driver is not focusing or thinking about driving.
Texting encompasses all three types of driving distractions. When a driver is texting, they are:
- Taking their eyes off the road to focus on typing out their message.
- Removing their hands from the wheel to type out the message.
- Focusing on the content of the text message that they are sending and not concentrating on the road.
All of these lead to an increased risk of car accidents. In fact, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety notes that texting while driving doubles the likelihood of a car accident. Driving while texting is even more dangerous and risky than driving while under the influence of alcohol.
The Dangers of Texting and Driving
When it comes to texting and car accidents, it might not seem obvious why texting is so dangerous while driving. Some of the key reasons it is so dangerous include:
- It takes an average of five seconds to read a text. During that time a driver going 55 mph drives the length of a football field.
- Texting while driving leads to a 400% increase in time spent with eyes off the road.
- After using a phone, it can a driver about 30 seconds to fully regain their focus on the road.
If the accident does not lead to fatalities, it can lead to long-lasting injuries such as:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI), in which the brain is damaged due to a blow or piercing injury. This can lead to long-term disability. Head injuries are among the most common injuries from car accidents.
- Spinal cord injuries, which can lead to partial or total paralysis below the injured area.
- Back injuries, a common injury due to car accidents. Back injuries do not always immediately show up but may show up days or weeks after the accident. The damage can be long-term.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, while not a physical injury, can also be caused by a car accident due to texting. Victims of car crashes sometimes experience mental and emotional injuries.
- Internal injuries, which may be the result of an object hitting the body heavily, or the body being hit by flying debris. This can include damage to internal organs or internal bleeding, which requires emergency medical treatment.
- Fractures and broken bones such as broken legs, ribs, arms, wrists, or pelvis.
- Facial disfigurement and scares due to broken glass or impact with a hard surface such as the steering wheel or windshield.
- Limb loss or amputation due to appendages such as an arm or leg being damaged so severely that it requires surgical amputation. This can lead to lifelong disabilities for the victim.
- Neck injuries, which can occur even at lower speeds such as 15 mph – even with the seatbelt on.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident that was the result of texting, you may have questions about what compensation you may be entitled to. An experienced personal injury lawyer such as Chuck Franklin at Chuck Franklin Law may be able to help.
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