What do you do while you drive? Listen to music? Text? Eat? Put on make-up? We all think we are great multitaskers, but all these simple activities are distracting and become hazards on the road. Distracted driving is responsible for approximately 1 out of 5 crashes. Driving while using a phone was proven to be more dangerous than driving under the influence in 2006 in a study by Mythbusters. State Farm Insurance Company reported that distracted driving is the cause of approximately 636,000 crashes, 330,000 personal injuries, 12,000 major injuries, and $43 billion in damages in the US each year. The Senate Bill prohibits drivers in Florida from typing into a virtual keyboard and sending or reading text messages while driving.

If an officer pulls over a driver for texting, he or she is subject to a $30 fine on the first offense. If the distracted driver caused an accident, the driver would be assessed 6 points on their license, and an additional 2 points if the incident was in a school zone. The next violation within the next 5 years is a $60 fine, plus court costs. All these violations result in increased insurance rates.

Nearly half of the adults surveyed in the United States admit to texting and driving, even though 98% of those surveyed by AT&T said they know it is dangerous. It only takes a few seconds for a driver to take your eyes off the road to read a text or reach for a phone, while a child steps off a curb. Florida’s texting and driving laws are not as strict as in Virginia, where the fine for the first time you are caught texting and driving is $125. If you are caught again, the fine increases to $250. The Federal Council in Florida is looking to change those laws and increase the penalties.

In 2014, at least 24% of all vehicle collisions involved cell phones, whether it involved texting, dialing, or reaching for a phone.That accounts for about 1.3 million crashes a year. It is also estimated that teens who text while driving spend 10% of their driving time swerving outside of their traffic lane.It is estimated that the minimum amount of time one’s attention is taken off the road to send a text is 5 seconds. If a driver is traveling at 55 miles per hour, during that short time, 100 yards have been traveled (the entire length of a football field), without looking at the road ahead. This leaves plenty of time for two drivers to be distracted long enough to create a major accident.

More than 13% of drivers between 18 and 20 years of age who were involved in car wrecks admitted to texting or talking on their cell phones at the time of the collision. About 34% admit to texting while driving. And that’s just those who admit to it; what about the percentage who don’t admit to it? That’s scary.

What’s even scarier is that texting while driving makes a collision with a moving or fixed object 23 times more likely than driving focused. The National Highway Transportation Council estimates that a driver who texts while driving is 6 times as likely to get into an accident than a driver driving with 0.08 blood alcohol content. Scared yet? There’s more; 77% of young adults believe that they can safely text and drive, and 55% say it’s easy to do. And if that isn’t enough, 1 out of 5 drivers of any age admit to surfing the web while driving.

If you’ve been in involved in an auto accident or injured, please give us a call at 1-800-Injured, and we’ll get you in touch with a great Miami car accident attorney in your area.

Category: Car Accidents