While many of us would never dream of driving while under the influence, how many of us can say the same about being a distracted driver? While drunk drivers do insurmountable damage on the road, distracted drivers contribute to a vast number of car accidents that lead to severe industry and often death. An estimated 660,000 number of drivers use electronic devices while driving during the day – and that’s just electronics. What about other types of distracted driving? Let’s take a look at some of the hard statistics on distracted driving as well as see what the most popular kinds of distracted driving are and how we can solve the problem.
How many accidents are a result of distracted drivers?
- Around 9 people are killed due to distracted drivers every day; more than 1000 people are injured daily.
- The annual number of accidents resulting from distracted drivers has increased over the years.
- There were 3,154 distracted driving deaths in 2013. In 2015, that number jumped to 3,477.
- Distracted drivers caused an astounding 391,000 injuries in 2015.
Who are the biggest perpetrators of distracted driving?
- Studies show that drivers under the age of 20 have a higher proportion of distraction-related crashes that ended in fatalities.
- A study surveying distracted driving amongst high school students showed that there were also links between distracted driving and other problematic driving habits; students who texted while driving were also less likely to wear a seatbelt, more likely to ride with someone driving under the influence, and were more likely to drink and drive themselves.
If you think checking your phone for only 5 seconds isn’t that bad, think again.
- In 5 seconds, your car can cover the length of a football field while driving at 55 miles per hour. Any number of accidents can occur during this distance.
- If you’re distracted for a brief amount of time, it takes on average 27 seconds for you to fully focus on the road again. Once again, it only takes a split second for an accident to happen.
The following are considered distracted driving and we can divide distracted driving in two categories; visual and manual.
Visual distractions include anything that takes your eyes off the road, like watching videos, rubbernecking, reading, and even checking GPS directions. This is a simple problem to fix; keep your eyes on the road. There’s no reason to watch videos or read while driving. If something is happening on the side of the road, like an accident, keep driving on. Slowing down and staring out your window can lead to another crash. Review directions before you climb into the car or turn on the gps audio, so the directions are read to you aloud. Do not check your GPS while driving.
Manual distractions involve taking your hands off the wheel. This includes looking after your kids in the back seat, talking on the phone, eating, putting on makeup and more. Cut down on these distractions by setting clear rules for yourself. If you need to eat or fix your makeup, take care of it either before you get into your car, after, or pull over somewhere. Get a headset to prevent yourself from talking on the phone. Pull the car over to address kids in the backseat.
In all of these instances, keep one thing on the top of your mind – your priority is safe driving. Nothing else – not texting, not answering the phone, not checking directions – are more important than making sure you’re a safe driver. However, while you can make sure you drive safely, there’s no way to police other drivers around you. If you end up in a car accident with a distracted driver, contact our offices immediately to determine your next move.