According to Distraction.gov, distracted driving led to more than 3,000 deaths in 2011. Distracted driving refers to the act of driving when not wholly concentrating on the road.
Causes of Oklahoma Car Accidents Involving Distracted Driving
The most common acts of distracted driving include texting and talking on the cell phone when behind the wheel. Drivers may become distracted when they use other electronic devices like tablets, fiddle with the navigation controls, read, take their eyes off the road to reach for things or groom. These are instances in which the driver takes hands off the wheel, eyes off the road and mind off of driving.
Distracted driving has reached epidemic proportions all over the United States, and Oklahoma is no exception. According to the statistics provided by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol via The Oklahoma Daily, using digital devices while driving caused 1,700 car accidents in Oklahoma in 2009. What is more disconcerting is that more than half involved teens and young adults.
Texting is Worse than Being Drunk
According to a study by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, the act of texting while driving makes a driver 23 times more likely to cause an accident. When texting while driving, the driver’s eyes are off the road for about 4.6 seconds, and if traveling at 55 mph, this amounts of driving the entire length of a standard football field without looking at the road! In fact, a driver who texts while driving is six times more likely to crash than someone who drives under the influence of alcohol.
Such accidents are more common in and around crowded metropolises like Oklahoma City where the volume of traffic is high, and even the slightest amount of drifting across lanes (a common instance when a driver has taken his or her eyes off the road to read a text) increases the risk of hitting another vehicle.
Distracted Driving Laws in Oklahoma
These disconcerting findings led to Oklahoma authorities laying down stringent rules to curb the menace of distracted driving.
The law bans drivers with learner’s permit or an intermediate driving license from using a hand-held cell phone while driving. Bus drivers are banned from using any kind of cell phone -- hand-held or hands-free -- when they are driving. They also cannot text while driving their vehicles.
Legal Help for Distracted Driving Victims in Oklahoma City
In spite of the laws and the media's focus on the dangers of distracted driving, many Oklahoma drivers flout the rules when they take the wheel. Proving a case of distracted driving to claim compensation can be tricky, especially if there are no witnesses. That is why many distracted driving victims in Oklahoma City choose to seek the help of a personal injury attorney who can fight for their rights.
Van Wey Law helps distracted driving victims in Oklahoma City fight to obtain compensation to which they are entitled for their damages. Give us a call at (800) 489-5082 to set up a consultation about your case and check out our book , Distracted to Death: Stop Distracted Driving and SAVE Lives.