You’re driving in Texas and you just want to make a cell phone call that will take a minute or two. Or you turn around to check on your kids in the back seat. Maybe you are a relaxed driver who likes to crank up the volume on the radio as you cruise down the highway or take a few bites of the burger you bought for lunch while you’re at the wheel.
All of these seemingly innocent actions and others like them take your eyes and concentration off the road. When you do that, even for a moment, you heighten the chance of having a collision. You and other individuals in your car could get hurt. You might unintentionally veer off the street and into a building or home.
The pause in your attentiveness may seem brief and harmless, but in fact, it can be lethal. That statement is borne out by information from the Texas Department of Transportation: “Last year , Texas roadways saw nearly 1 in 5 crashes caused by a distracted driver in which 364 people died and 2,200 were seriously injured.” TxDOT also states that distracted driving ranks second among reasons for “traffic-related crash causes.”
Guarding against distracted driving
Cultivate safe driving habits. Don’t get involved with the phone, eating, socializing, applying makeup, reading maps or a GPS or other activities behind the wheel. These suggestions from TxDOT may help:
- Think about putting your phone completely aside while you are driving.
- Inform people who typically contact you that you can’t answer them while you are behind the wheel.
- If you have to answer a phone call or a text message, do so only after you reach your destination.
Crashes caused by distracted driving
You’re a responsible driver, or you wouldn’t take steps to minimize the distractions you encounter behind the wheel. Unfortunately, you can’t control other drivers. Even though people know it’s not the best choice to make, distracted driving still happens frequently. If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident connected with distracted driving, know your rights and the possibility of making a claim to cover your losses.