Despite the fact that the potential dangers of drunk driving are typically well known in the United States, over 10,0000 traffic fatalities occur in the U.S. annually due to drunk driving. According to the CDC, 1 out of 3 vehicular mortalities involves alcohol consumption. Today, drunk driving is a perilous and hazardous activity that should be avoided. As a result, the incidences of drunk driving convictions are actually on the decline. However, in today’s age, another serious driving risk that needs to be taken into account, texting and driving.
Some experts state that distracted driving, such as responding to a text while driving, may even be riskier than driving while under the influence. Many people question if driving and texting may be more dangerous than driving while drunk and studies show that it just may be. Through a thorough understanding of the dangers of distracted driving and driving while under the influence, we may take action collectively to make driving safer and minimize the number of needless accidents to keep ourselves and our loved ones out of harm’s way.
At this point, almost every U.S. citizen understands full well that drinking and driving is an illegal hazardous act. A driver with a BAC just over the limit of .08 is over 7x more likely to be in a lethal vehicle collision than a sober individual. Suppose the individual’s BAC rises to .15 or above. In that case, they become 25x more likely to be involved in a fatal auto accident. Statistics show that the more a person drinks, the more likely they will be involved in an accident. While drunk driving deaths are on the decline in the U.S. compared to years past, there still remain around 10,000 fatalities each year due to drunk driving incidents.
Distracted driving may be described as any action that detracts the driver’s focus away from focusing on the road. This may include eating, talking, seeking music, applying makeup, etc. In 2015, nearly 3,500 were killed due to distracted driving, and nearly 400 thousand were injured. The dangers of distracted driving are significant. Distracted driving has become one of the largest contributors to auto collisions in the U.S. In fact, in response to the significant uprising of collisions attributed to distracted driving, some states across the U.S. have enacted traffic laws to curb the potentially lethal consequences associated with distracted driving. Penalties and laws will vary from state to state.
How risky is texting while driving vs. drunk driving? Texting while driving may be the riskiest way a person may be distracted while driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration explains that “sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.” When comparing drunk driving to texting while driving, consider the following statistics:
It is estimated by the CDC that 9 individuals are killed every day in the U.S. in a collision involving a distracted driver. In 2019, over 3,000 fatalities and around 424,000 injuries were reported due to a collision involving a distracted driver. Additionally, not all accidents involving distracted drivers involved two or more vehicles. In 2019, out of fatalities reported, around 1 out of 5 individuals killed were pedestrians. Texting and driving crashes are more prevalently caused by young adults than any other age group. A 2019 survey indicated that 39% of high school students who participated in the survey admitted to texting or emailing while driving in the past 30 days.
Many states across the U.S. have implemented new laws that punish distracted driving to curb the dangers associated with distracted driving. Additionally, many groups across the country are developing task forces to raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving. These attempts have been successful in educating younger people to the dangers of distracted driving. Some individuals become involved in such community actions to spread awareness and share their personal stories of loved ones lost to distracted driving. Finally, as distracted driving has become a serious concern, many tech companies are creating apps and mobile phone updates designed to curtain distracted driving and help drivers focus on the road.
If you have become involved in a collision with a distracted or drunk driver, or if you have been found liable in an accident in which distracted driving was a factor, do not hesitate to contact an experienced car accident lawyer.
The experienced attorneys at the law offices of Tatum & Atkinson “The Heavy Hitters” are available to assist you by calling (800) 529-0804 today or by contacting us online. We have over 65 years of collective experience obtaining car accident injury victims the compensation they deserve.