Recognizing that a problem exists is the one of the most important steps towards fixing the problem. Unfortunately, when it comes to the issue of texting while driving, far too many people believe that it is not a serious issue. In fact, according to recent studies, motorists use their phones on approximately 88 percent of all trips. Over half of all younger drivers said that over the past 30 days, they engaged in distracted driving behavior that involved head-down reading while driving. To better understand why so many people do not consider texting while driving to be extremely dangerous, it may help to obtain a better understanding of how humans evaluate risk.
Common sense tells you that you should not look at your phone while driving. However, if you are expecting an important text and you hear the message alert, quickly checking the message may not seem like such a bad idea. When nothing bad happens, you may feel comfortable checking your phone more often, eventually feeling like nothing could possibly happen if you send a quick text. Sitting at a red light may seem like the perfect time to pick up your phone and check your messages or send a text, since your vehicle is not moving. Unfortunately, when your attention is distracted, even for a few seconds, a serious accident can happen when you least expect it.
Looking Versus Seeing
The problem with distracted driving is that you are less likely to react quickly to a potential disaster because your attention was focused on your phone and not on the road ahead. Even if your eyes were looking in the general direction of the road, you may not notice a car approaching, or a cyclist crossing the street until it is too late. Texting while sitting at a traffic light can be dangerous because once the light turns green, it can take the brain close to half a minute to resume processing what the eyes should be looking at.
Can the Problem Be Fixed?
There is no easy fix to this issue, but there are steps that can be taken that can help change people’s behavior over time. Safety campaigns should educate people about how the mind works and why people think the way they do. Parents need to set a good example by putting their phones away when they are driving. Car and phone manufacturers should anticipate potential misuse problems and provide warnings about what can go wrong if a vehicle is not equipped with lockout safety features.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents
If you have been injured in a car accident involving another driver who was texting while driving, contact the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton as soon as possible. We will determine who is responsible for your injuries and pursue the maximum financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent injured victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.