Drivers who get distracted in the car put everyone around them at risk. It’s often hard to gather accurate statistics on how often distractions cause accidents — there may be little concrete evidence and drivers may lie about getting distracted — but it’s clear that it happens often. The biggest form of distraction is the cellular phone, but there are three main types of distracted driving to consider.
The first type of distraction is mental. You can be influenced by this even when watching the road intently. For instance, drivers often daydream while driving. If you’ve ever “zoned out” and suddenly realized you don’t remember the last few miles, you can see how serious it is. Emotional issues like feeling angry or depressed also fall into this category.
The second type of distraction means you’re still thinking about driving, but you’re not holding the wheel with two hands as you should. For instance, you may try to eat in the car, drop something onto the car floor, and reach down to pick it up without stopping. Other physical distractions include simple things that everyone does: Adjusting the rearview mirror, for example, or reaching for your coffee in the cupholder.
The final type of distraction is visual. A safe driver must always watch the road carefully. Someone who is looking at a friend while having a conversation is distracted, as is someone who is looking at their phone while reading a text message. Even glancing at a stopped car or a fender-bender can be a visual distraction.
If you get injured in an accident with a distracted driver, you may have a right to seek compensation for your medical bills and other costs.