Officials are asking drivers throughout the country to take a pledge to drive cell phone-free! Distraction.gov offers drivers a pledge to take as we enter the New Year. There are a number of distractions in which a driver can engage in while behind the wheel. Safety advocates are asking drivers to curb these distractions in an attempt to make our roadways safer for everyone.
The pledge asks drivers to never use a cell phone or a text messaging device while driving, to be a good passenger, and to speak up if a driver is engaging in distractions behind the wheel. Help spread the word to get friends and family members to join the commitment. The more drivers who take this pledge, it’s less likely that we’ll see distraction-related car accidents in Chicago.
Our Chicago car accident attorneys understand just how dangerous distractions are. In 2010, there were roughly 3,100 people in the U.S. who died because of distraction-related traffic accidents. According to Jesse White, the Secretary of State, the Distracted Driving Task Force was created in 2009 to help stop these types of accidents. Later, the task force helped to pass legislation banning the use of text messaging devices for all drivers. The group also helped to make it illegal for drivers to use a cell phone while driving through construction zones and through school zones.
The number of fatal traffic accidents that involved a distracted driver has increased from 8 percent in 2004 to more than 10 percent in 2008. White urges officials to continue on in their efforts to help educate and to raise awareness within the public about this dangerous driver behavior.
According to Cyber Drive Illinois, Driver Distractions Include:
-Sending, receiving and reading text messages.
-Making phone calls or answering phone calls.
-Changing the CD, adjusting with the radio or working an MP3 player.
-Writing or reading.
-Messing with GPS devices or other road maps.
-Reaching for something in the glove compartment.
-Engaging in conversation with passengers.
-Cleaning the inside of your windshield.
-Grooming; applying makeup, brushing your hair, etc.
-Using eye drops or messing with your contact lenses.
-Doing your nails.
-Watching a video.
Distractions can cause a driver to take his or her eyes off of the roadway, to take their hands off the steering wheel, or to take their mind off of the task at hand — driving. As we are well into the winter holiday travel season, drivers are asked to be cautious, alert and focused behind the wheel to avoid causing a distraction-related accident. We would like to wish you and your family a happy holiday season and ask that you include a conversation about distracted driving at this year’s holiday gatherings.
If you or someone you love has been in an accident with a distracted driver, the personal injury attorneys and wrongful death lawyers at Abels & Annes offer free and confidential appointments to discuss your rights. Call (866) 99-ABELS. There is no fee unless you win.
More Blog Entries:
USDOT’s “OMG” PSAs to Curb Distraction-Related Teen Car Accidents in Chicago, Nation, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, December 13, 2011
NHTSA Releases New 2010 Data for Car Accidents in Illinois and Elsewhere, Chicago Car Accident Lawyers Blog, December 9, 2011