Zweig Law, PC Attorneys at Law

Distracted driving study reveals growing road safety issue

The results of a recent study suggest that drivers in Colorado and around the country spend an average of 13 minutes each day looking at their cellphone screens while behind the wheel. Root Insurance, which offers motorists discounts for not engaging in this potentially deadly behavior, commissioned a Virginia-based research firm to conduct the online poll.

Previous research into distracted driving has revealed that most motorists have an inflated view of their own behind-the-wheel skills and criticize others for behavior that they are often guilty of themselves. The Root Insurance study is no different. Almost 40% of the drivers polled admitted that even seeing a police car in their rear-view mirrors was not enough to convince them to put their phones down, but 90% considered themselves to be more skilled than Uber or Lyft drivers.

The respondents also admitted to using their phones for more than making or receiving calls. Over half admitted to using their smartphones to type texts or send emails while driving, and one-third confessed to using their devices to post on social media or read posts. A worrying 18% of the drivers polled said that they even use their cellphones to watch videos while behind the wheel.

One of the challenges facing police accident investigators is that distraction leaves no obvious physical clues. However, electronic records may reveal that a distracted motorist was not paying attention when they crashed. If the events suggest that distraction may have been a factor but police investigations fail to reach firm conclusions, an experienced personal injury attorney may use subpoenas to access wireless service and internet usage data. Legal counsel could ultimately help a crash victim obtain compensation for crash-related damages.

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