Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers Discuss Dangers of Using Apps While Driving
September 19, 2016
As our dependence on smartphones increases, the number of potential distractions for drivers has grown with it. Currently, 46 states and the District of Columbia have legislation banning texting while driving, and warnings against distracted driving are posted on highways across the country. Texting is no longer the only concern, however. Apps such as Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, Google Maps, Spotify, and now the latest phenomenon, Pokémon Go, have drivers taking their attention away from the road. The use of these apps puts the drivers and those around them at a heightened risk for being involved in a car accident.
Pokémon Go has already been blamed for numerous distracted driving car accidents. A driver in Baltimore allegedly drove into a parked police car while playing the game. Similarly, a teen in Napa ran into a power pole while reportedly engrossed in the game. Each new addictive app becomes a hazard for drivers and others sharing the road.
Distracted Driving Behavior Prevalent Among Teens
Teen drivers may be the biggest offenders when it comes to using apps while driving. According to a recent survey by Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) and Liberty Mutual Insurance, out of 2,500 high school-aged drivers, 70 percent reported using apps while behind the wheel. When asked to rank how distracting or dangerous certain types of behaviors are while driving, 29 percent gave driving under the influence the top spot, while 26 percent said that writing or reading text messages while driving was the most dangerous. Only six percent of respondents ranked reading or posting on social media as the most dangerous or distracting behavior.
Teenagers are not the only distracted drivers on the road, however. The National Safety Council (NSC) conducted another survey of drivers of all ages. Of the 2,400 surveyed, 74 percent said that they would use Facebook while driving. Nearly 37 percent of the respondents said that they would use Twitter, 35 percent would use YouTube, and 33 percent would use Instagram while operating a vehicle.
Distracted Driving Estimates Much Higher Than Reported
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that more than eight people lose their lives and 1,000 people are injured each day in crashes which list distracted driving as a factor. The real number of fatal car accidents involving distracted drivers could be much higher, however, as instances of distracted driving are under-reported. Many drivers are reluctant to admit that they were using cell phones, eating, or doing other activities while behind the wheel. The NSC estimates that phone use accounts for 25 percent of all auto accidents.
In the time it takes to read one text, the average driver can travel the length of a football field without his or her eyes on the road. Researchers at the University of Utah state that one text message can make drivers six times more likely to get into an accident. It is not just other drivers who are at risk: pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists can easily be missed by a driver who is not watching the road.
Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP Obtain Compensation for Distracted Driving Accident Victims
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a car accident involving a distracted driver, call our Philadelphia car accident lawyers at Galfand Berger LLP. Our knowledgeable, professional lawyers have successfully represented clients in all types of auto accident cases and will fight tirelessly to pursue the compensation you deserve. With offices located in Philadelphia, Allentown and Reading, we help accident victims throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Call us today at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) or contact us online for a free consultation.