New Orleans motorists reminded to stay focused during Distracted Driving Awareness Month.
Distracted driving poses a serious threat to motorists on Louisiana roads, especially in the bustling city of New Orleans. According to Forbes Advisor, distracted driving is a leading cause of approximately 3,000 fatalities per year, equivalent to an average of 9 deaths daily. As we observe National Distracted Driving Awareness Month this April, it's crucial to bear in mind the potentially fatal outcomes of driving while distracted. When drivers divert their attention from the road, the risk of accidents significantly rises, putting all road users in harm's way.
Distracted driving in Louisiana
Distracted driving is a widespread issue across the United States, but the severity of its impact may vary depending on the state. Forbes Advisor recently ranked each state by the percentage of fatal crashes resulting from distracted driving, with Louisiana ranking third at 19.82%. Sadly, Louisiana is no stranger to car accidents - Trusted Choice reports that a traffic collision occurs every 3 minutes and 12 seconds in the state, with many incidents attributed to distracted driving.
Despite the legal penalties and potential consequences of distracted driving violations in Louisiana, the problem persists. According to Louisiana.gov, using a mobile phone for texting or social media posting while operating a vehicle is illegal. The first offense is punishable by a fine of $175, with subsequent offenses costing $500 each. These fines apply to all public roads, including school zones, underscoring the importance of keeping focused on the road.
Understanding the different types of driver distraction
Distracted driving encompasses more than just using a mobile phone while driving. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road, even momentarily, is considered a distraction. In general, distractions can be categorized into three types:
- Visual distractions: These distractions cause drivers to take their eyes away from the road. Examples include looking at your phone, GPS, a billboard, and scenery.
- Manual distractions: These distractions cause drivers to take their hands off the wheel. Examples include eating, drinking, changing the music and climate, and reaching for something in the backseat.
- Cognitive distractions: These distractions cause drivers to take their minds off driving. Examples include daydreaming, engaging in conversation with passengers, stress, anxiety, and personal problems.
Texting and driving is one of the most common forms of distraction and the most dangerous. This is because it involves all three types of distractions, visual, manual, and cognitive, which greatly heightens the risk of accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that sending or reading a text while driving takes a driver's eyes off the road for an average of 5 seconds, equivalent to driving the length of a football field at 55 mph without looking at the road. This greatly increases the risk of accidents and underscores the importance of focusing on the road while driving.
Hit by a distracted driver in New Orleans? Get a car accident lawyer who knows how to hold negligent drivers accountable.
Distracted driving is not only extremely dangerous, but it is also a clear indication of negligence and recklessness on the part of the driver. Whether they choose to text, talk on the phone, eat, or engage in any other form of distraction, they put themselves and others at risk.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries due to the reckless actions of a distracted driver, you deserve compensation. At the Law Offices of John S. Williams, LLC, we understand the severe consequences that result from these types of accidents and work diligently to help you seek the compensation you deserve. With extensive experience and knowledge in handling such cases, we build strong legal strategies to achieve the best possible outcomes.
To learn more about how an experienced New Orleans car accident lawyer can assist you, contact us today and schedule a free consultation. Our office is located in New Orleans, and we serve clients throughout Louisiana.