Authorities struggle to cope with surge in distracted driving

Motor vehicle accidents caused by distracted drivers claimed 3,477 lives throughout Illinois and the rest of the country in 2015. Unfortunately, most road safety experts expect the problem to get even worse in the years ahead. Smartphones and automobile entertainment and navigation systems are often blamed for the recent surge in distracted driving accidents and injuries, but studies have found that talking to passengers may actually be the most distracting behavior that motorists engage in.

Collisions involving distracted drivers are often deadly because evasive action is rarely taken during such incidents. Efforts to deal with the problem include stricter distracted driving laws, more rigorous policing and public awareness campaigns. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 660,000 U.S. motorists are using their cellphones while behind the wheel during daylight hours.

Road safety campaigns dealing with traditional hazards like intoxication and fatigue have traditionally relied on television and radio to get the message out, but NHTSA believes that using social media will be a more effective strategy to deal with distracted driving. This is because researchers have found that teenagers are the demographic group most likely to be involved in this kind of crash. The latest example of this approach is the initiative that will run in April during Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

Distracted drivers are sometimes killed in the accidents they cause, but that does not mean that other road users who were injured or suffered property damage are unable to peruse civil remedies. In situations where negligent drivers have lost their lives or face decades of incarceration, personal injury attorneys may seek compensation for car accident victims by initiating litigation against the necessary insurance providers or estates.

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