If you suffered injuries in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you may assume that a cellphone was involved in some capacity. In reality, there are many different types of distraction, and they all pose a deadly threat to every other driver and passenger on California roads.
When distraction is a factor in a serious car accident, it can be useful to understand the different types of distraction and how they impact a person's ability to drive safely. If you are a victim of any type of distracted driving motor vehicle accident, you have the right to a full and fair recovery.
The three main types of distracted driving
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are three types of distraction that can take a driver's attention:
- Visual distraction: From billboards to looking at a navigation system, visual distractions are everywhere. Even with both hands on the wheel, a driver is engaging in risky behavior when taking his or her eyes off the road for just one second.
- Manual distraction: This happens any time a driver takes one or both hands off the wheel. Whether it is due to reaching for a phone or adjusting the radio, manual distraction is dangerous.
- Cognitive distraction: Cognitive distraction happens any time a driver's attention and thoughts are on anything other than safe driving. This can include talking to a passenger or simply being lost in one's thoughts.
Texting and driving is one of the most common distraction-related behaviors exhibited by drivers, and it is one of the most dangerous because it involves all three types of distraction. Texting is also dangerous because it takes a driver's attention for longer periods of time. Experts estimate that when traveling at 55 miles per hour, reading a text can take a driver's attention off the road for a distance as long as a football field.
What should you do if a distracted driver hurts you?
If distraction played a role in your accident, it can be beneficial to seek the help of an attorney experienced in fighting for victims of distracted driving. It is possible to build a strong claim, and a thorough investigation can determine how to move forward with a potential civil claim. In order to ensure a strong representation of your rights and interests, you would be wise to work with a legal ally as soon as possible after your accident.