Protecting Victims of Distracted Drivers
In Florida, distracted driving accounts for 16% of all fatal crashes, according to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Distracted driving can involve using a smartphone, eating or drinking, or talking to passengers while driving. Distracted driving accident attorney Stephen G. Charpentier establishes liability by identifying the cause of an accident and then demanding full and fair compensation for victims. To schedule a free case review, contact us online or call us at (321) 308-8020. Charpentier Law Firm, P.A. has offices in Cocoa, Titusville, and Melbourne, FL.
What Is Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving is any driving pattern that takes a driver’s attention away from the road. The most common form of distracted driving is texting and driving. But other activities are also considered distracting, such as adjusting the radio or temperature controls, reaching into the glove compartment or back seat for items, or turning around to discipline a child.
Many cars come equipped with safety features designed to cut down on distract driving, like hands-free phone use and navigation screens, but even these technological advancements do not completely eliminate the problem. Technology sometimes fails and a driver may be tempted to resort to texting or making a manual phone call rather than relying on Bluetooth, or might even attempt to enter data into a GPS system while driving. Any of these actions divert attention from the road, and can lead to a catastrophic accident.
Distracted driving is hazardous and can cause life-changing injuries.
Florida Distracted Driving Statistics
In Florida, the 2016 statistics regarding distracted driving are alarming:
- 50,000 car accidents were caused by a distracted driver.
- The death toll from accidents caused by distracted driving was just over 200.
- The rate of serious injury in a distracted driving accident was close to 4,000 injuries.
These numbers are hard evidence that distracted driving happens frequently. An accident can lead to
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken bones
- Damage to internal organs
- Cuts and lacerations
- Severe bruising
- Spinal cord and neck injuries
Many times, these injuries result in paralysis or other permanent disabilities. Long-term rehabilitative services, therapy, and multiple surgeries may be required, and a victim still may not fully recover.
Restitution for those injured in a distracted driving accident can include:
- Repayment of lost wages
- Loss of future earnings
- Loss of earning capacity
- Reimbursement for all medical expenses
A distracted driving accident attorney can help by establishing liability and pursuing maximum compensation.
Forms of Distracted Driving
Distracted driving can take any of these forms:
- Cognitive: A lack of focus on driving results when a driver is distracted and unable to pay attention to their driving. Talking to other passengers or thinking of other tasks are examples of cognitive distractions.
- Physical: Eating or drinking while driving does not allow a driver to keep both hands on the wheel, and is a form of physically distracted driving. Texting and driving also falls in this category.
- Visual: When a driver takes their eyes off the road, their vision is distracted by other things and does not allow for full attention to be given to driving. Reading an email message or scanning for a different radio station are visual forms of distracted driving.
Call our Office for Help
If you have been in a car accident with a distracted driver, we know how to help. To speak with our office or schedule an appointment, contact us online or call us at (321) 308-8020.