Far too many drivers in West Virginia and across the United States continue to operate a vehicle while distracted, according to the results of a survey published by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Since 2013, the number of drivers who report holding cell phone conversations behind the wheel on a regular basis has risen 46 percent. At the same time, 88 percent of participants expressed serious concern about distracted driving, noting that it is a rising issue that is becoming more prominent.
The survey was conducted as part of the Traffic Safety Culture Index, which aims to identify popular attitudes and practices related to safety on the roads. It gathered data from 2,613 licensed drivers across the country aged 16 and older. The participants were asked about their own driving practices. Nearly 50 percent of the respondents said they had spoken on a handheld phone behind the wheel recently, and almost 45 percent of the participants said they had read text messages or emails while driving. Another 35 percent of the people who were surveyed said they had sent a text or email while operating a vehicle.
Despite their own reported practices, however, 58 percent of the respondents said that talking on the phone while driving is dangerous, and 78 percent of the participants identified texting while driving as a significant danger. Statistics show that individuals who talk on a mobile phone while operating their cars are four times more likely to crash than those who do not. Texting drivers are eight times more likely to be involved in a car accident.
Despite the growing awareness of the dangers of distracted driving, negligent driving practices take place far too frequently on the roads. People who have been injured in car accidents that were caused by another person's dangerous behavior can consult with a personal injury lawyer. An attorney can help victims fight to receive the damages they deserve for lost wages and pain and suffering.