Regular warnings to motorists about the dangers of handling a phone while driving doesn’t seem to have discouraged them, according to the latest research from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). According to the 2018 survey, cell phone use while driving is up 57 percent.
A 2018 national survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that 64 percent of respondents consider distracted driving a much bigger problem today than it was three years ago.
Drivers taking their eyes off the road
If you have driven Arkansas roads and highways, you probably know this. Smartphone use impacts how drivers scan and process information from behind the wheel. Drivers often take their eyes off the road to dial, send a text and even browse the web on a smartphone.
Each of those actions falls under the category of manipulating the phone, according to the IIHS, an independent, nonprofit, educational and scientific organization founded to reduce reducing deaths, injuries and property damage from motor vehicle accidents.
"The latest data suggest that drivers are using their phones in riskier ways," says David Kidd, who co-authored the study. "The observed shift in phone use is concerning because studies consistently link manipulating a cell phone while driving to increased crash risk."
“Society increasingly expects people to multitask at all times of day,” said Consumer Reports’ Kelly Funkhouser. “There is going to be pressure to accomplish something if they’re getting pinged on their phone.’’
What we can do
Consumer Reports suggests being prepared. Read these suggestions before you get behind the wheel, because drivers still can’t keep their hands off their phones:
- Don’t use your phone while driving.
- Keep it out of reach – even the flash of an incoming text can be distracting.
- If you are going to use it, program your navigation information and music into your phone before you get behind the wheel.
- Ask your passengers to help: They can answer texts, work the navigation system or change audio settings. Let them.
When you have been through the worst, the best legal team in Arkansas is a phone call or e-mail away. The personal injury lawyers at McDaniel Law Firm, PLC, in Jonesboro have more than 50 years of combined experience in personal injury law. If you need help, contact our law firm today for a free consultation.