Dangers of Texting and Driving – And How to Stop It
The message can wait.
As car accident lawyers, we know the dangers of texting and driving aren’t limited to teenagers. Now, adults are just as likely to text and drive as younger generations. Aside from texting, smartphones have caused drivers to be even more distracted on the road, as some admit to sending emails or scrolling through social media while driving as well.
Here we break down the dangers of texting and driving and provide tips to help stop the harmful habit.
Your Attention Is Diverted
Texting while driving is distracted driving in all its forms. Your eyes and one of your hands are off the road. Plus, your mind is thinking about what you’re writing, not where you’re going. You’re also less likely to notice the distance between you and the car in front of you. Additionally, you won’t have as much time to stop if someone or something comes out of nowhere and into your lane or stops suddenly.
You’re 23 Times More Likely to Crash Your Vehicle
Although your eyes may only be on your phone for five seconds, that’s all it takes to travel 100 yards at 55 mph and therefore increases your chances of an accident. According to the National Safety Council, texting while driving causes 1.6 million car accidents and almost 390,000 injuries in the US every year. The Zebra reported that 4,637 people died in car crashes in 2018 due to cell phone use. Any accident caused by texting and driving, no matter how major or minor, may result in your insurance premium going up.
It’s Comparable to Drunk or Impaired Driving
According to the Brain Injury Society, texting while driving is as bad as drinking four beers and getting behind the wheel. The Zebra reported that texting while driving is six times more likely to cause a car accident than drunk driving. Though drunk driving accidents result in more fatalities, the delayed reaction times and impact each can have on your driving are similar.
Texting and Driving Laws in PA
PENNDOT states that the Pennsylvania Texting While Driving Ban prohibits as a primary offense any driver from using an Interactive Wireless Communication Device to send, read, or write a text-based communication while his or her vehicle is in motion. It institutes a $50 fine, plus court charges and other fees, but carries no points and is not recorded on the driver record for non-commercial drivers.
How You Can Stop Texting and Driving
Putting an end to texting and driving starts with you. To spark a change in the people around you, you must lead by example. This can be as easy as:
- Putting your phone on do not disturb while you’re driving.
- Leaving your phone out of sight.
- If your car has the capability for hands-free calling and texting, enable those features.
- If your phone provider or device offers a “Drive Mode,” use it while you’re on the road. People who text you will receive a message that you are currently driving and will respond to them once you have reached your destination.
If you or a loved one was injured in a car accident, contact the personal injury lawyers at Flager & Associates today by calling (215) 953-5200. We provide free case evaluations.