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Red light accidents are on the rise, and smartphones are to blame

Your smartphone is an important part of your life, and it is easy to see why. Smartphones are actually much more than just phones. They act as a communication device, entertainment provider, GPS guide and much, much more. Unfortunately, smartphones can also be very addictive. Drivers are increasingly using smartphones while behind the wheel, and it is causing an increase in red light accidents and traffic fatalities.

It is no secret that it is dangerous to use smartphones while driving. Since more and more drivers are still looking at phones instead of the road, it is obvious that many people simply do not care. Here are some important facts to know about smartphone use and traffic deaths.

Distracted drivers are everywhere

Even if you have never heard the term "phone addict," you probably know someone who has trouble looking away from his or her smartphone. Not only do phone addicts tend to ignore those around them, but they also do not pay attention to driving for 28% of their driving time. According to research, phone addicts are more dangerous than drunk drivers.

There was also a 10% increase in distracted behavior among all drivers between Aug. 2018 and Aug. 2019. With so many distractions in a handheld device, many people struggle to just put their phones down while performing other tasks. While this is annoying during everyday tasks, it can be deadly while driving.

Red light traffic deaths are on the rise

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a study that compared the number of fatalities involving drivers running red lights over a 10-year period. In 2017 -- the last year when annual information was available -- there were 939 deaths. That is the highest figure in a decade and follows a five-year trend of rising deaths from accidents at red lights.

The study also looked at who is dying in these collisions. The drivers who run red lights account for approximately 35% of fatalities, while drivers and passengers in the other vehicles make up 46% of deaths. Pedestrians and cyclists make up 5% of deaths.

Do you need help after an accident?

You may feel lucky to have survived your red light accident, but now you have to deal with the aftermath. If you were injured, your recovery might be long and painful. As you seek medical treatment, you have to take time off work. Since you have to deal with medical bills, losing income during your recovery only complicates your situation.

However, your situation is not hopeless. After being injured in red light accidents, many victims in Oklahoma choose to seek compensation by filing personal injury suits against the responsible drivers. If you choose this path, you could potentially recover compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical bills, and other damages related to your injuries. Be sure to speak with an experienced attorney if you need further guidance on pursuing this option.

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