Anyone who has been on the road in Pittsburgh and throughout Pennsylvania will likely have a story of encountering a distracted driver. The reasons for people choosing to drive while distracted are not often considered, but an online survey for Travelers Insurance examined this very issue. In the responses, it was found that people are not solely texting friends, checking emails, using social media or playing games. Many - more than four of every 10 - are using their phones for work while driving. This can be a key factor when there is a car accident and victims are seeking to be compensated for their injuries and losses.
The reason people are using their smartphones for work while driving is pressure from their employer. This is making the roads more dangerous. People between the ages of 18 and 44 had the highest rate of using their smartphones for work. A separate poll from Allstate Insurance says that around half the drivers they spoke to admitted they have been guilty of texting and driving. State Farm found the 91 percent of drivers stated their belief that talking to passengers was distracting.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says there were nearly 3,500 fatalities because of distracted driving in 2015. When a driver removes his or her eyes from the road when traveling at 55 mph, it is the equivalent of driving the same distance as a football field while wearing a blindfold. Distracted driving is not limited to using a smartphone. It can include changing the radio, using a navigation system, using entertainment systems, eating and drinking, and the previously mentioned talking to passengers.
Regardless of the advice drivers are given to avoid being distracted by pulling over to use the phone, slowing down, and keeping an eye on the road, people will inevitably continue to be distracted. This is particularly true with the increasing capabilities of smartphones, the rising demands on people for their work and the belief that multitasking is safe. When there is an accident, it is imperative that there be a full crash reconstruction as part of a comprehensive investigation. The medical expenses, lost time at work and other issues that come with a car accident can significantly damage a person's life. A legal filing is often the only method to recover compensation. A lawyer experienced in car accidents can be of help.
Source: wpxi.com, "Around 40% of drivers admit to this frightening bad habit," Craig Johnson, Dec. 4, 2017