Distracted driving in Florida

Florida drivers and other users of the roads should be aware of the growing dangers of distracted driving. Federal, state and local authorities are working to reduce the problem. However, recently published national statistics suggest that there is a long way to go.

For example, in the year 2011, nearly one accident out of five involved at least one driver who had not been giving their full attention to the road at the time of the crash. An estimated nine people die every day because of an accident that involved a distracted driver, and more than 1,100 people are injured under similar circumstances. Distracted driving is defined as the operation of a motor vehicle without regard for visual, manual or cognitive distractions. Visual distractions are those that cause the driver to look away from the road. Manual distractions happen when the driver takes their hands away from the wheel. Cognitive distractions occur when something takes the driver’s mind of the road. Sending and receiving text messages, which is illegal in many states, is considered to be particularly troublesome because it incorporates all three distractions.

Distracted driving is prominent among younger drivers. Approximately 16 percent of all crashes that involved distraction had at least one driver under 20 years of age. Drivers in that age group were also disproportionately represented among distraction-related fatalities. Research indicates that this problem may be more prevalent among American drivers than among those from many other countries.

A personal injury lawsuit may be filed against a a driver who caused physical harm to another because of negligence, carelessness or illegal action. An attorney may be of help to an injured victim who wishes to demonstrate where the legal responsibility for an accident rests and collect financial compensation from the appropriate parties.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Distracted Driving“, January 03, 2015