Van-Lear Eckert
Experienced Southern Illinois Attorney
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How prevalent are fatal distracted driving auto accidents?

| Apr 25, 2018 | Personal Injury |

When people in Belleville are behind the wheel of a car, their entire focus should be on the task of driving. However, distractions abound that could take a driver’s attention off of the road. Our smartphones are a major source of distraction, but even eating in the car, tuning the radio, looking at the GPS, adjusting the heat or air conditioning or even talking to passengers can all take a driver’s attention off of the road, and potentially cause a car accident.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2016, 9 percent of fatal car accidents were reported as distracted driving accidents. In fact, in that year, 3,450 individuals lost their lives in auto accidents caused by distracted drivers. Teens between the ages of 15 to 19 had the greatest proportion of motorists who were distracted when a deadly accident occurred. Also, in 2016, over 560 pedestrians, bicyclists and other people who weren’t occupants of a vehicle lost their lives in a distracted driving accident.

Distracted driving is a major issue plaguing the roadways of Illinois and nationwide. Technology may have simplified may aspects of our lives, but it has also given us the idea that we can multitask in just about any situation. However, one time when people should never try to multitask is when they’re behind the wheel of a car. If a person’s attention is taken off the road, it only takes a split-second for an accident to occur that injures or kills another individual.

When a person is killed in a crash caused by a distracted driver, their survivors may find their whole world has been turned upside down. They must make arrangements for a funeral. They must find a way to make ends meet without the income the deceased provided. They must pay for any medical expenses their loved one incurred prior to passing away. And they must learn to deal without the companionship their loved one provided. All of this comes at a steep financial price. Therefore, those who have lost a loved one in a distracted driving accident may want to determine whether it is possible to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the driver who caused the crash.