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Understanding the impact of distracted driving

Bergen County drivers may be interested in some statistics concerning a dangerous activity on U.S. roads. Texting and driving, which is done by nearly one-third of polled drivers, causes thousands of deaths and many more injuries every year.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that over 3,000 people were killed during 2012 because of distracted driver accidents. That same year, over 400,000 people were injured due to distracted driving. Almost one-fifth of the crashes in the U.S. in 2011 involved distractions on the road. Contributing to this issue is the tendency of U.S. drivers to talk on cellphones and use text messaging while driving. Studies show that 69 percent of U.S. drivers aged 18 to 64 admitted to having a cell phone conversation while driving within the prior 30 days. Thirty-one percent of those same drivers admitted to either sending or reading a text message while driving.

According to the CDC, there are three major types of distraction that one can face while driving: visual, manual and cognitive. Text messaging can involve all three of these distractions since the driver is taking their eyes off the road, taking their hands off the wheel and taking their mind off the activity of driving. Therefore, texting and driving is, in the opinion of the CDC, a particularly dangerous activity.

A car accident caused by someone who is texting and driving can lead to serious injuries for those involved. An attorney may be able to assess the evidence and determine the party that is at fault. The injured parties may then be able to file a lawsuit against them with the attorney's help. This can lead to compensation for their injuries, including medical expenses and pain and suffering damages.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Distracted Driving", December 13, 2014

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