Austin Distracted Driver Accidents Attorney
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that in 2009, there were 5,474 people killed in distracted driver accidents, and an estimated 448,000 others were injured. Distracted driving has become such a serious problem that a number of states, including Texas, have created laws to limit such potential distractions as texting and talking on the phone.
Distractions that put drivers, passengers, bicyclists, and pedestrians at risk include:
- Texting or using a smart phone to access the internet
- Personal grooming activities, such as applying makeup or using an electric razor
- Eating or drinking
- Reading a map or programming a GPS system
- Adjusting the radio or an MP3 player
- Talking to passengers
A driver who takes their eyes off the road for even a few seconds puts others at risk. Traffic patterns can change in an instant, and an inattentive driver is much less likely to notice a bicyclist or pedestrian crossing the street ahead. This negligence causes thousands of injuries and fatalities every year, disrupting lives and breaking apart families.
Visual, Manual, & Cognitive Distractions
There are three types of driver distraction: visual, manual and cognitive. A visual distraction is anything that keeps the driver from watching the road. For example, a driver who attempts to watch a video while driving is visually distracted. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Driver Distraction Guidelines, a visual distraction is any task that requires the motorist to look away from the road to obtain information visually. This could include glancing at a GPS or looking an incoming text message on your phone – even if you don’t pick up the device.
Manual distractions include any action or task that forces the motorist to take his/her hands off the wheel while driving. Eating food while driving or holding a cell phone behind the wheel is a manual distraction. Texting while driving is visually and manually distracting. Other manual distractions include applying makeup, adjusting the radio, and using a navigation system. Many times, driver distractions are visually and manually disruptive. For example: a driver would probably use his/her hands and eyes to read a road map. This means that the driver’s manual and visual focus is temporarily taken away from the road.
The third type of distraction, cognitive distraction, occurs when the driver’s mental focus is taken away from the road. Cognitive distractions include listening to loud music, listening to an audio book, participating in a conversation with a passenger, or simply failing to pay attention to the road. Cognitive distractions are typically combined with visual or manual distractions. For instance, talking on a hand-held cell phone is manually and cognitively distracting. Texting while driving is especially dangerous because it is a visual, manual, and cognitive distraction. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury because of a distracted driver, contact The Loewy Law Firm.
Distracted Driving Prevention
Distracted driving is a serious issue in the United States. To help protect American motorists, many states have enacted texting while driving bans and the use of other electronic devices behind the wheel. Other states use graduated driver licensing systems to help raise distracted driving awareness among young and new drivers. A graduated licensing system gradually introduces inexperienced drivers to more and more complicated driving situations. For instance, young drivers are not allowed to drive minor passengers in some states until they acquire driving experience. In other states, new drivers must remain crash- and conviction-free for a year before obtaining a full license. In 2009, President Obama issued an order to keep federal workers from texting behind the wheel of government vehicles. In 2010, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration implemented a ban that prohibited commercial drivers from texting behind the wheel of commercial vehicle.
Fighting for Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents in Austin, Tx
If you were injured or lost someone you love because of the actions of a distracted driver, the Loewy Law Firm may be able to help you obtain justice. Distracted driving car accidents often inflict those involved with broken bones, back and neck injuries, and traumatic brain damage. The Loewy Law Firm is devoted to standing up for the victims of accidents that causepersonal injury and wrongful death. Under the direction of Mr. Loewy, we provide clients with strong and aggressive representation, because we are determined to help families pick up the pieces of their lives.
If you have been victimized by the behavior of a distracted driver you may be entitled to compensation. Mr. Loewy will fight for your case, because you should not have to suffer with daily pain, endless hospital bills, and lost wages any longer. An intricate and powerful strategy specific to your situation will be developed for your case. Here, we consider our clients to be lifelong friends, and we are committed to working diligently to obtain the best result possible in every case. Contact our Austin firm today to discuss how our Austin car accident attorney can help your case.