Almost everyone has heard of distracted driving by now, and most of us associate it with using our phones or other technology while driving. Distracted driving is much more than that.
Distracted driving is anything that takes a driver’s attention away from the road, and it continues to be a major problem in Louisiana.
Recent distracted driving statistics
The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission reports that over 190 people were killed in an accident involving distracted driving between 2016 and 2020. In 2020 alone, over 20,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents.
Louisiana has several laws in place involving phone-related distracted driving. Texting while driving is illegal. Using a hands-free device is illegal in school zones, and using your phone altogether is illegal if you have a learner’s permit or intermediate license.
It is best to avoid your phone completely when driving, unless absolutely necessary. If there is an emergency, try to pull over and use your phone rather than stay on the road.
Talking to people in your vehicle, eating, drinking or using your GPS or navigation system are other forms of distracted driving. While not illegal, you should still try to avoid them when driving.
Why distracted driving is so dangerous
Activities like these affect your ability to focus on driving, even if all you are doing is having a casual conversation. You may also take your hands off the wheel or look somewhere else besides the road.
Even if you always drive carefully, chances are you will encounter distracted drivers on the road. An accident with a distracted driver can cause you significant physical, financial and emotional damage.
Helping you recover after a distracted driving accident
Distracted driving is negligent driving. A personal injury claim establishing negligence can help you recover compensation for your damages.
Proving negligence requires showing the other driver had a duty to drive safely and reasonably, failed in that duty and caused you damages. Negligence can be tricky to prove, especially if the other driver argues that you contributed to the accident. Having advice and guidance can help.