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Broward, Palm Beach Distracted Driving: More than Cell Phones

We’ve been talking about distracted driving a lot lately, but it’s important to remember that distracted driving doesn’t refer just to cell phone-using drivers. There’s a slew of distracted that can cause serious car accidents in Sebastian and elsewhere.

A Florida accident illustrated once again just how dangerous distractions can be for drivers. According to the Orlando Sentinel, an Orange County firefighter was on the side of the road assisting a motorcyclist when another driver lost control of her vehicle and slammed right into the firefighter — nearly killing him. He suffered from a broken back, neck, ribs and a number of other serious injuries. Accident reports indicate that the woman was talking on her cell phone when the accident happened.

Cell phones aren’t the only problem we have to worry about though. Drivers are oftentimes busted text messaging, messing with their GPS, eating, applying makeup and even shaving behind the wheel. Drivers think it’s safe and effective to multitask. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

“Distracted driving kills, maims, seriously injures,” said Rey Rivero, Orange County Undersheriff.

The truth of the matter is that distracted drivers cause thousands of car accidents each and every year. It’s so bad that officials estimate that for every 2 seconds a driver spends engaging in distractions, they double their risks for a crash.

You might remember the accident that happened in Orlando with a crossing guard. The guard was helping children to get across the road when a passing driver, who was talking on his cell phone behind the wheel, almost hit the crossing kids. The crossing guard jumped out in front of the car to protect the children.

Distractions, especially text messaging, are a “triple threat.” They take the driver’s eyes off of the road, their hands off of the wheel and their mind off of driving. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), text messaging drivers are nearly 25 times more likely to get into a car accident than non-texting drivers.

In 2009, officials said that distracted driving was involved in the deaths of close to 5,500 people and another 450,000 injuries. Officials believe that there are actually many more of these kinds of accidents that happen that we never know about. You see, drivers are never quick to admit when they caused an accident because they were distracted. And there’s also no test to discover driver distractions, like there are to point out drunk drivers.

With the holidays approaching, drivers are asked to be safe out there, to keep their attention on the road and to keep distractions out of the driver’s seat. Make sure your friends and family members understand these risks, too! With the snowbirds trickling in, our roadways are going to be more congested and more dangerous. Safety requires your full attention — put it on the road.

If you or someone in your family has been injured in an automobile accident, contact the injury attorneys of Freeman, Mallard, Sharp & Gonzalez, LLC for a free consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-561-7777.

More Blog Entries:

Increased Risks for Car Accidents with Winter Snowbird Population, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney, November 3, 2012

Car Accidents in Florida More Likely in Rainy Weather, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney, October 16, 2012

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