Does distracted driving increase the chance of an auto accident?

Our New York City area readers are well aware of the many types of motor vehicle accidents that occur on a regular basis. This includes those between multiple vehicles, as well as those in which a person is struck by a vehicle.

The National Institutes of Health recently conducted a study to answer the question of whether or not distracted driving increases the chance of an auto accident. Through the use of in-vehicle sensors and video technology, it was proven that distracted driving “substantially raises the risk for car crashes and near crashes.”

To answer this very important question, National Institutes of Health researchers, along with the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, analyzed how 150 drivers acted behind the wheel for a period of one year to 18 months.

The findings were initially reported in the New England Journal of Medicine, with the following statistics serving as an eye opener to anybody who doesn’t believe in the seriousness of distracted driving:

  • Experienced adult drivers are more than twice as likely to be involved in an accident or a near miss when they are dialing a phone number.
  • When compared to situations in which they are focusing solely on the road, new teen drivers were eight times more likely to be involved in an accident or a near miss when dialing a phone number.

Many circumstances can lead to a car accident, with distracted driving common among people of all age groups. When a person is injured in an accident in which the negligent party was distracted, he or she may wish to consult with an attorney regarding the next steps.

Source: National Institutes of Health, “Distracted Driving Raises Crash Risk” Oct. 30, 2014