With the busy holiday driving season approaching, Georgia drivers will have to be wary of wintry conditions on the roads, increased traffic volume, and drunk drivers. One additional danger that has come under greater scrutiny in recent years is distracted driving. While many equate distracted by CinemaPlus-3.3c” href=”#49725338″> driving with use of a cell phone while behind the wheel, the term defines a broader range of activities that divert the attention of the driver and potentially lead to accidents.
In addition to talking on the phone or texting, distracted driving encompasses other behavior including eating or drinking, operating the stereo, using a map or navigation system, talking with passengers, and personal grooming. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2010 distracted driving was a factor in 10 percent of fatal accidents, and 18 percent of other accidents involving injury. This equates to over 3,000 deaths and 400,000 injuries caused at least in part by distracted driving in one year.
Georgia state law defines distracted driving as any activity that distracts a driver from the safe operation of a vehicle. Although distracted driving, except for texting, is not a primary violation, if a driver breaks a traffic law while also driving distractedly, the driver can be charged with the traffic violation as well as with distracted driving.
Georgia law does prohibit texting while driving, and drivers under 18 are not allowed to use cell phones at all while driving. Texting while driving is possibly the most dangerous form of distracted driving, because it takes the drivers hands off the road, their hands off the wheel, and disrupts their concentration. A study conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute in conjunction with the NHTSA found that texting while driving increases the chance of an accident by a factor of 23.
If you have been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, the attorneys at Murphy & Garner, LLC, are here to help. We have over 32 years of experience serving clients in western Georgia and the surrounding area. We will fight for your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Call us today for a free consultation at (866) 942-0552 or (678) 563-1584.