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Does distracted driving lead to fatal accidents?

Distracted driving has been a recent priority topic across the United States, including in Oklahoma. Not only has distracted driving contributed to an increase in total accidents over the past two decades, but it has also been a factor in many fatal accidents. This data set has assuredly risen in conjunction with the expansive use of cellphones by the population at large, but other factors have contributed to the distraction problem before smartphones and other electronic devices became so common.

Information that has been released by the Center for Diseases Control (CDC) regarding motor vehicle accident statistics indicates that there are three distinct types of distractions. They are:

  • Visual
  • Manual
  • Cognitive

Visual distractions can range from something catching your eye while driving down the highway to noticing a deer at the edge of the road preparing to dart in front of your vehicle. Anything that takes a driver’s eyes off the highway and away from driving is dangerous from a practical standpoint.

Manual distractions can stem from a variety of situations as well, particularly other passengers who don’t stay still. Even though wearing seat belts is the law, this regulation is not always observed as diligently as needed. These distractions generally require you to take your hands off the wheel. This category also includes drinking or eating while driving.

Cognitive distractions are also very dangerous, and they can happen when drivers are in transport and thinking about things other than the task at hand. This can happen in single-car accidents on the open road that are explainable and range to those that take place in congested traffic when following the vehicle in front too closely.

Experienced MVA attorneys in Oklahoma understand how distracted driving can result in very serious, and even, fatal accidents that often include head-on collisions at high rates of speed. Not only can they result in extended criminal charges when accidents occur, but evidence of distracted driving can result in wrongful death cases in some instances.


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