Most of us spend what we might consider to be too much time in the car, whether that’s due to commuting, kids’ activities, traveling to see family in other areas, or more. Have you ever arrived at a destination and thought to yourself that you really did not even remember driving there—as if you were operating on autopilot? Often all it takes is one close call to snap us out of what can be a driving daze, or a complete exercise in distraction with phone calls, texts, food, passengers engaging us, and more. (Note: if you tend to be a distracted driver, make a pact with yourself to stop, and today!)
It’s not enough just to be alert one hundred percent of the time though, and if you’ve spent any time helping a friend or a teenage son or daughter learn to drive, you’ve probably broached the topic of defensive driving. This is more important than ever today, as so many drivers are so distracted, and often on the verge of causing an accident if others are not paying close attention.
Keep an Eagle Eye Out for Distracted Drivers
To all the daring multi-taskers out there, take heed as the National Safety Council points out that the mind really can’t do two things at once. If another driver is busy on the phone, their perception is undeniably diminished in terms of driving skill and the ability to gauge distances. This means the rest of us must be twice as alert in giving them plenty of room, and avoiding rear-ending them when they slam on the brakes absentmindedly—or being swerved into as their eyes are on the electronics instead of the highway ahead.
Drunk Drivers Still Take Lives Every Day
While distracted driving has taken the number one spot for causing accidents, drunk drivers—as well as those who are high on illegal or prescription drugs—still pose a terrifying danger to other drivers, pedestrians, and themselves. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, one person dies every 53 minutes in an accident related to drunk driving. Obviously, you have more chance of being on the road with drivers under the influence later in the evenings and unfortunately, during times of celebration such as Memorial Day, July 4th, or during the Christmas season.
Keeping drunk drivers off the road whenever possible is imperative as well—even if you must drive a tipsy friend home or call them a cab from a party. And if you see a car on the road that seems to have an intoxicated driver at the wheel, do not hesitate to call the police.
Always Be a Defensive Driver
Sometimes you may simply have to watch out for those with poor driving skills. They may not have taken a drink or be looking at their phone, but they may not understand the rules of the road—or may be overly tired. Perhaps you are driving in a rain or snowstorm. It’s best to assume that you should be vigilant regarding every car around you. Make sure to give every car enough braking room whether you are driving behind or ahead, and never pull out in front of another driver just because they have their turn signal on. While it may be tempting to speed if you are in a hurry, rush through that traffic light, or expect that other drivers are going to follow all rules properly, remember that ultimately, safety on the road means you must always be on the defense.
Contact Us Now If You’ve Been Injured
Have you or a loved one suffered injury due to a distracted or drunk driver’s negligence? If so, it is important to hire an experienced personal injury law firm that will look out for the needs of you and your family. The lawyers at Heintz & Becker have been helping clients in the Bradenton-Sarasota area for over 30 years with car, truck and motorcycle injury accidents, as well as cases involving other forms of negligence. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!
All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.