Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of road accidents in the United States. In 2017 alone, distracted driving resulted in 3,166 deaths. In 2018, this number rose to nearly 5,000.
As a driver, you may be distracted by a variety of things. There may be kids in the car making noise, a call that seems very important, or you use your mobile phone to send a text message. There are a multitude of things that serve as distractions.
If a driver is distracted by something for even a few seconds, this results in driving negligence. Such negligence can result in serious death or injury, both to you, pedestrians or other drivers. This is why it is vitally important to understand how you can do your part to help prevent distracted driving. If you’ve been injured in a distracted driving accident, you should call a car accident attorney in Birmingham right away.
Minimize the Use of Mobile Phones to Cut Down on Distracted Driving
One of the key distractions while driving is your mobile phone. You may be tempted to take a phone call or even respond to a text message while driving. However, both may lead to fatal consequences as they fully distract you from driving. A good way to avoid this is to make any important phone calls you need to make before you hit the road.
If you have an incoming call that simply can’t be avoided, park your car in a safe area and then take the call. It is not worth it to risk your life and that of others over what seems like an important call. The same is true for texting which is even more dangerous and carries a first violation fine of $25 in Alabama.
Also make sure you don’t use your phone for photos, videos or other purposes while driving. In fact, it is advisable that the front-seat passenger should also avoid such activities as they can draw the attention of the driver and create a distraction.
Lay Down Ground Rules for Kids
Parents with kids in the car are a lot more likely to be distracted while driving compared to drivers with no kids. This is simply because kids like to have fun. And when they are having fun or chatting, the driver is likely to indulge as well. This can create a distraction which often results in an accident.
If you drive with your kids, you need to set down ground rules to ensure your safety and that of your kids. These rules can be simple, such as no loud noises, no moving around and no commotion. Also, make sure the kids always wear seat belts when riding in the car.
Stop the Car if Drowsy
37% of drivers have fallen asleep or felt very drowsy at least once while driving. Drowsiness is one of the most dangerous driving distractions. It effectively eliminates all driver control of the wheel. Compared to alert driving, it enhances the risk of an accident by four times.
If you feel sleepy or drowsy, it is time to pull off the road and take a break. You can stop at a rest stop, have a coffee or simply get a quick nap in your parked car. These alternatives are a lot better than trying to speed to your destination and run the risk of dozing off along the way.
Use a Pet Restraint
If you drive with a pet in the car, make sure you use a pet restraint. Pets can be a major distraction while driving. If not restrained, the pet may jump or frolic. You may be tempted to reach for the pet which increases your chance of a crash by up to eight times. By using a pet restraint, you make sure that the pets remain in place and creates no distraction.
Set the Controls Before You Drive
If you need to set up a navigation tool, look for a destination or mark a route, do these before you begin driving. You should also adjust the stereo, look up your sunglasses or get any other items you need beforehand. If you perform any of these tasks while driving, they can become dangerous distractions.
How Can a Birmingham Car Accident Lawyer Help Your Distracted Driving Case?
If you have been involved in a crash caused by distracted driving, the negligent driver may have caused injuries to you or a loved one. This is when a Birmingham car accident lawyer may be able to help you. A lawyer will help you understand your rights.
Hiring a Birmingham Car Accident Attorney
Here at Hare, Wynn, Newell & Newton, we specialize in handling car accident cases. If you have been involved in a car accident near Birmingham, Alabama, give us a call today. Our attorneys will schedule a FREE consultation where you can discuss your case in detail.