No matter where you go, highways and roads are full of all kinds of vehicles, from regular passenger cars and motorcycles to 18-wheelers and large trucks. The Dallas-Fort Worth roads are especially busy. In under a decade, the DFW area added over a million new residents, pushing the population total of DFW to over 7.5 million people. This makes DFW the fourth-largest metro area in the country, trailing only New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Naturally, this also means that the roads in DFW are more congested than ever. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), downtown Dallas sees over 160,000 cars travel through it daily.
Furthermore, a recent study discovered that you are 46% more likely to get in a car accident in Dallas than anywhere else in the state. The growing population in DFW is a big reason for this, but there are other factors. Due to the increase in mobile technology, the number of cases of distracted driving continues to rise. However, distracted driving can be the result of many things, not just mobile devices. Regardless of the cause, it’s extremely dangerous and threatens not only your own life but the lives of others on the road.
Due to the continuing rise in distracted driving accidents, April is now recognized as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. This month is used as a time to shed some light on the dangers of focusing your attention elsewhere while behind the wheel of a car and the impact it has. If you or a loved one were involved in an accident with a distracted driver, do not hesitate to contact Wormington & Bollinger.
Distracted Driving Statistics
As we mentioned earlier, distracted driving continues to be an issue that threatens everyone on any road. With an increasing number of drivers getting behind the wheel of a car, especially in DFW, focusing on anything other than the road ahead and the other drivers may lead to fatal consequences. During Distracted Driving Awareness Month, it’s important to understand the threat that driving distracted poses. Wormington & Bollinger compiled some statistics to better express how much of an issue distracted driving truly is:
- According to a survey conducted by The Zebra, 37.1% of drivers agreed that distractions from mobile devices are dangerous. However, 28.6% of respondents reported texting and driving as their number one distracted driving behavior
- 7% admitted that they eat or drink while driving
- Distracted driving claimed the lives of 2,841 lives in 2018
- 1,730 were drivers
- 605 were passengers
- 400 were pedestrians
- 77 were bicyclists
- An estimated 400,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents in 2018
- 21% of accidents involving teen drivers were due to cell phone distractions
- 48.6% of drivers admit to answering a phone call while driving
- Every day, distracted driving kills 9 people and injures 1,000 more
- Drivers under the age of 20 make up the highest proportion of distraction-related fatal crashes
As you can see, distracted driving poses a serious threat to not only just drivers but passengers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. This National Distracted Driving Month, you should always be conscious of the danger of driving while distracted.
Causes of Distraction
So far, we have highlighted how the growing number of mobile devices has seen the number of distracted driving cases increase over the years. However, it is far from the only distraction drivers face. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states that there are three main types of distractions, and they are:
- Visual: Taking your eyes off the road
- Manual: Taking your hands off the wheel
- Cognitive: Taking your mind off driving
Some distractions can either be one or more of these types, but each is dangerous and puts you and others in harm’s way. Some of the most common types of distractions drivers face are:
- Mobile devices (phone calls, texting and driving, video chats, emails, social media, etc.)
- Eating or drinking
- Applying makeup
- Talking to other passengers
- Reading, including maps
- Adjusting the radio or another listening device
- Using a navigation device
If you are distracted while behind the wheel of a car, you drastically increase your risk of suffering an injury in a car accident or worse. Wormington & Bollinger urges you to practice safe driving and always focus on the task at hand. That means keeping your eyes on the road, hands on the wheel, and mind on driving.
Celebrating Distracted Driving Awareness Month
Every April is a chance for individuals to put a spotlight on just how dangerous distracted driving is. Whether you are talking on the phone, texting, eating, or even talking to your passengers, you are not giving the road and the drivers around you the attention they need. After all, the road is full of vehicles that weigh thousands of pounds, so these accidents are often fatal. During Distracted Driving Awareness Month, Wormington & Bollinger encourages you to celebrate this month and safe driving. You can do so by:
- Driving Responsibly: Arguably, the easiest and most important way to celebrate Distracted Driving Awareness Month is to practice safe driving. That means keeping your eyes on the road, hands on the wheel, and focus on driving. Also, you should never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Reminding Your Loved Ones: If you are a passenger in a car with someone who is driving distracted, whether they are texting, eating, or putting on makeup, remind them how dangerous that is and ask them to stop. After all, they put your life in danger by doing so.
- Taking the Pledge: This April, take the pledge to drive distraction-free, not just in April but year-round. Encourage your friends and family to join you, as well. Share your pledge on your social media accounts to encourage others to join.
Each year, the number of accidents caused by distracted driving rises. Mobile devices and smartphones have only increased these numbers. To help combat this trend, every April, we celebrate Distracted Driving Awareness Month to shed some light on the dangers of driving while distracted. If you were injured in an accident with a distracted driver, contact Wormington & Bollinger today and let us fight for you.