Reaction Time Reduced When Texting & Driving
Distracted driving is a broad concept. It can include driving while using a cell phone or other mobile devices, eating and drinking, applying makeup, or even just talking with a vehicle passenger. Essentially, any activity that diverts the attention of the driver away from the task of driving is potentially dangerous. In 2009, 1 out of every 5 car accident injuries involved distracted driving. Nearly 5,500 fatalities were attributed to distracted driving that same year.
Recent Statistics on Distracted Driving
A recent survey conducted by the Texas Transportation Institute polled 24 drivers from the ages of 16 to 54. The findings concluded that texting behind the wheel could be even riskier than experts once thought. The study found that the reaction time of drivers decreased when they were texting. Ultimately, one to two seconds for drivers who were not texting went down to three to four seconds when they were. This is much more than experts expected. The study noted that this surprise could have deadly repercussions on American roadways.
There was no crucial difference in the reaction time between those who were sending outgoing text messages and those who were reading incoming messages. Statistics show that looking away from the road, such as glancing down to check a text or email, can hinder the reaction time of the driver by as much as 100 percent. This is an extremely valuable time when a car ahead of you comes to a stop or a child runs onto the road.
This study coincides with an increase in traffic fatalities related to distracted driving. 16 percent of all traffic fatalities were attributed to distracted motorists in 2008, according to research gathered by the University of North Texas Health Science Center.
Despite Awareness of the Risks, Drivers Still Text Behind the Wheel
Coincidentally, a separate study from the American Automobile Association found that, while nearly all drivers know that texting while driving was a hazard, around 33 percent of all motorists admit to texting behind the wheel. Other studies have found that most drivers believe that texting in the driver’s seat should be against the law. As of now, 34 states, along with Washington D.C., have bans in place for texting while driving.
You should contact an experienced New Mexico car crash attorney if you or a loved one was injured by a distracted driver. You could be able to recover the costs of lost financial expenses caused by the driver’s negligence.
Texting & Driving Crashes in New Mexico
The most common form of distracted driving on the road today is texting while behind the wheel. These collisions are responsible for hundreds of thousands of injuries each year. If you are injured by a distracted motorist, you can seek the legal counsel of an Albuquerque car accident lawyer to protect your legal right. The team at Will Ferguson & Associates has the resources to provide high-quality legal representation. Contact our law offices at (505) 243-5566 to put us to work on your case.