What Drivers Need to Know About Distracted Driving Accidents

Car accidents caused by distracted drivers continue to increase year after year. As people become increasingly reliant on their smartphones, they’re more likely to use them while also driving a vehicle. Other distractions can also lead to car accidents, including programming your navigation system or reaching into the backseat to grab an item.

While answering a text message or making a phone call may seem innocent enough at first, it can present a dangerous risk to everyone on the road. Distractions reduce a driver’s ability to drive defensively, meaning they may rear-end the driver in front of them or side-swipe someone in the lane next to them. If you’re injured in an accident with a distracted driver, it can lead to both painful and expensive injuries.

Here are a few things that you might not know about car accidents and distracted driving:

Distracted Driving is as Dangerous as Drinking and Driving

Distracted driving can be just as dangerous as drinking and driving. Driving while using a smartphone or not paying attention to the road can make it difficult to come to a stop safely. In fact, some studies even show that the reaction time of a driver who’s reading or writing a text message may be slower than that of a drunk driver.

Distracted Driving May Be More Common Than You Think

Most people are aware of the risks of distracted driving, but not many realize just how common it is. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that as many as 400,000 people are injured in an auto accident each year due to distracted driving. It’s also possible that this number is much higher because it’s not always easy to confirm that an accident was caused by a distraction.

You May Be Able to Seek Damages From a Distracted Driver

Distracted driving is a type of negligence. This means that if another driver causes an accident and you’re injured, you may be able to seek damages from them. New Jersey is a no-fault insurance state, which means that your insurance company will first cover the cost of your damages, regardless of who’s at fault. However, if your damages exceed what’s available through your insurance policy, you may be able to file a personal injury case.

What is Distracted Driving?

It can be helpful to know what distracted driving is, which can help you pursue a legal claim if you suffer injuries in this type of accident. Distracted driving describes any behavior that takes a driver’s attention off the road in front of them. This may include:

  • Making a phone call
  • Sending or reading texts
  • Programming directions into a GPS
  • Changing the radio station
  • Turning around to get something in the back seat
  • Putting on make-up
  • Eating a meal
  • Reading a magazine

Each of these behaviors increases the driver’s risk of causing an accident. Distracted drivers also can’t defensively react to dangerous drivers around them. Many automakers today design vehicles with hands-free capabilities that allow drivers to keep up with text messages and phone calls while keeping their focus on the road. It’s also important to note that distracted driving is illegal in New Jersey.

Contact a Linwood Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Distracted Driving Case in New Jersey

Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a distracted driver in New Jersey? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at The Law Offices of Richard A. Stoloff represent clients injured because of a distracted driver in Linwood, Pleasantville, Hammonton, Somers Point, Ventnor City, and throughout New Jersey. Call (609) 601-2233 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 605 New Road, Linwood, NJ 08221, as well as an office in Philadelphia, PA.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.