Drunk and distracted driving is a serious hazard facing drivers today. It can involve anything from shifting your eyes off the road to accessing your phone or being drunk while driving. When something distracts us, it takes our focus away from driving safely and risks our lives and the lives of those around us. According to a 2020 report from Forbes Advisor, distracted driving caused 391,000 reported injuries and more than 3,142 fatalities in 2019 in the United States alone.
According to NHTSA, approximately 37 individuals in the United States lose their lives in drunk-driving accidents, occurring at a rate of one person every 39 minutes. In 2021, there were 13,384 fatalities in alcohol-impaired driving accidents, representing a 14% increase from the previous year. All of these deaths could have been avoided.
2023 is seeing even higher rates of drunk and distracted driving with an increase of 4 percent since 2019 according to Forbes Advisor’s 2021 estimate. Distractions come from various sources including cell phones, electronic devices, food and drink consumption, personal grooming activities, navigation systems, and conversations with passengers or others in the vehicle. Studies have also revealed that certain types of distractions are much worse than others in terms of impact on safety for example texting while driving was found to be six times more dangerous than talking on a cell phone and does not require manual manipulation.
Leading Causes of Traffic Deaths
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released its latest projections for traffic fatalities in 2022, estimating that 42,795 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes. This represents a small decrease of about 0.3% as compared to 42,939 fatalities reported for 2021
Drunk and distracted driving is a significant issue in the United States, contributing to numerous accidents, injuries, and fatalities each year.
Drunk Driving Cases
Driving a vehicle while impaired is considered a violation. Strict enforcement of drunk-driving laws has played a significant role in the decrease of drunk-driving fatalities since the 1980s. Impaired driving can lead to a range of charges, from misdemeanors to felony offenses, and can result in penalties such as driver’s license revocation, fines, and jail time. It is also quite expensive. A first-time offense may result in the driver being subject to fines and legal fees totaling over $10,000.
Distracted Driving Cases
Distracted driving poses a major danger on our roads, and understanding the different kinds of distractions can go a long way in helping people stay safe. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are three main kinds of distracted driving: visual, manual, and cognitive.
It involves taking your eyes off the road in any way. This can range from using a GPS or looking at a billboard to rubbernecking an accident or simply admiring the scenery. These moments of distraction can have disastrous consequences if not kept to a minimum.
The second type of distracted driving is manual distraction. This is when hands leave the steering wheel while operating a vehicle—for instance when fiddling with the radio or eating something behind the wheel. This type of behavior compromises one’s ability to have complete control of their vehicle and should be avoided whenever possible. It’s also important to note that both visual and manual distractions can reduce reaction time in an emergency situation, so keeping the focus on the road while driving is paramount for safety.
Cognitive distraction is one of the leading causes of traffic deaths in 2023. It happens when a driver’s focus shifts away from driving and his or her attention becomes diverted to another activity. This can include activities such as deep conversation, daydreaming, listening to music, or checking a text message.
Chicago Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents can be very serious events that can cause devastating physical, emotional, and financial damage. Recovering from an injury caused by a distracted or negligent driver can be long and arduous. That is why it is incredibly important for those involved in car accidents caused by another driver to seek out professional legal help as soon as possible.
There are experienced Chicago car accident lawyers at Phillips Law Offices who provide expert legal counsel and representation to victims of car accidents. They understand the difficulties clients face after being injured in a car accident and they are here to help them get the justice they deserve. Personal injury attorneys at Phillips Law Offices have the knowledge and resources necessary to hold those responsible accountable for their actions while ensuring that their clients receive maximum compensation for their losses. They will work diligently on each client’s case to ensure that an insurance settlement or jury verdict adequately compensates them for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. If you or someone close to you has been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, then contact our car accident lawyer today to discuss your case and get started on pursuing rightful compensation.