Distracted driving is a danger caused by drivers nationwide, including in Florida. Distractions include anything that takes a driver’s focus away from driving. Although many drivers think they can multitask by keeping one eye on the road while tending to other matters, it does not work that way. Deadly accidents can occur in seconds.
- Visual distractions take a driver’s eyes away from the road.
- Manual distractions occur when the driver’s hands are taken off the steering wheel.
- Cognitive distractions are those that make a driver thinking of non-driving matters.
The more categories involved when a driver is distracted, the more significant the crash risk.
Texting while driving involves all three categories, and that is why it is regarded as a primary distracted driving risk. However, many other actions while driving cause distractions, including the following:
- Grooming or applying makeup
- Eating and drinking beverages
- Tending to back seat passengers or kids
- Interacting with passengers
- Dealing with unsecured pets
- Checking GPS settings
- Adjusting temperature controls or radio settings
- Rubbernecking to see events along the road
Even daydreaming could take a driver’s attention away from driving because it could prevent spotting hazards in time to react. All the driver’s attention is necessary to identify dangers, react appropriately and bring the vehicle to a safe stop.
Many drivers do not realize that deadly crashes could occur between identifying a hazard and the brain recognizing and processing it. This is called perception distance. After that comes reaction distance, which is the distance traveled between the moment the brain acknowledges the risk and instructs the body how to react — by physically hitting the brakes.
Victims of car accidents in Florida caused by distracted drivers might have grounds to pursue financial relief to cover economic and other damages. However, for a personal injury lawsuit to lead to a civil court’s monetary judgment to cover documented claims, the plaintiff must prove negligence by another party.