Types of Driver Distractions
Driving distractions are most often under the driver’s control. Few distractions are so urgent that a driver cannot opt to ignore the distraction or pull over and stop driving until the distraction has passed. By exercising self-discipline, you can keep your eyes and attention on the road and your hands on the steering wheel.
The most common distractions that can limit your capacity to make the best decisions on the road and lead to motor vehicle accidents include:
- Cell phones: Whether you are talking, making a call, or checking your missed alerts, cell phones cause you to take your focus off the road. In January 2019, a new Illinois law went into effect that prohibits the use of any handheld device. Electronic messages include texts and commands to access the internet. While driving, if you must make a phone call or check a text message, pull over to the side of the road to use your cell phone. Otherwise, you may put other motorists at risk.
- Dropped items: Attempting to retrieve a dropped item while driving is one of the deadliest mistakes you can make. Objects can become stuck in your pedals or lodged in between your seats, making them impossible to reach while driving. Dropped items are visual, cognitive, and manual distractions. Never attempt to retrieve a dropped item; always pull over to safely pick up your object.
- Reading: Attempting to read a map, directions, a magazine, or any type of material takes your focus and eyes off the road. If you are lost and need to read directions, pull onto the shoulder or at a gas station to determine where you need to go. The last thing that you want to do is become a crash victim or an at-fault driver causing injuries or fatalities on the road.
- Fussy or unruly children: If a young child is crying or fussing, you will naturally shift your attention to them in an effort to make them stop. Older children can be incredibly distracting if they are fighting, yelling at inopportune times, or acting unruly in general. Before you go on a trip, be sure to talk to your kids about acceptable behavior inside the vehicle.
All of these forms of negligence can cause serious injury or even prove fatal to the accident victim. If you or a loved one have been affected by a motorist that was distracted by their cell phone or other visual distractions or cognitive distractions at the time of the crash, our car accident lawyers are here to help you receive fair compensation for medical expenses, emotional distress, property damage, and beyond.
Dangers of Texting & Driving
Walner Law knows what an epidemic texting while driving has become, and we also know that this bad habit is causing a significant number of serious personal injuries and fatalities, as it distracts the driver’s mind from the road. Texting while driving has been banned in several states, and hefty fines are being assessed for those who break this law. The number of car accidents in our nation each day is staggering. Now, with the advent of multiple technological devices such as smartphones, drivers are more distracted than ever before. These distractions lead to more accidents, which lead to more serious personal injuries and wrongful deaths.
In August 2009, Illinois became the 17th state to ban texting while driving. Governor Pat Quinn signed the amendment to the Illinois Vehicle Code, which makes exceptions for those who pull over to text or shift their car into park while stopped in traffic. If you have lost a loved one in a car accident due to a texting driver or a driver who was otherwise distracted, or if you have received an auto-related injury that has negatively impacted your life, you may be entitled to compensation. Please contact the Chicago car accident attorneys at Harvey L. Walner & Associates today to schedule a confidential, no-cost consultation. Your initial call to Walner Law is always free, and we work on a contingency basis, which means you pay no fees unless we win your case.
If you have been hurt in a motor vehicle accident, please call (312) 410-8496 or message our Chicago distracted driving accident lawyers today for a free initial consultation.
Full Self-Driving Capabilities Will Not Protect You From Serious Accidents
Modern drivers are living in a time where a host of new technologies are being introduced to automobiles. One of the newer technologies to emerge is self-driving. Cars that boast this feature are often believed to be able to navigate the road fairly safely on their own. As such, this can be a major cause of drivers engaging in the main types of distractions listed above.
Even if your car has self-driving features, this does not give you the go-ahead to use your cell phone, eat, or otherwise engage in activities that can pull your attention away from the road. Self-driving features come with a wide range of issues, and trusting your car to do it all for you while you use handheld devices can lead to fatal crashes and a lawsuit.