Recently, attention has been focused on the dangers of distracted driving. While most people immediately think of teenage drivers who are texting and driving, semi truck drivers using their cell phones may be even more dangerous. When semi truck drivers are distracted, they can easily cause a serious or even fatal accident.
What Is Distracted Driving?
Technically, distracted driving occurs when a driver’s attention is taken off the road by anything, including eating, smoking, changing the station on the radio or talking and texting on a cell phone or other device. However, the term “distracted driving” has come to be associated primarily with cell phone use, as cell phones have been linked to a rising number of fatal and injurious accidents.
How Do Cell Phones Contribute To Distracted Driving?
Cell phones can contribute to distracted driving in two major ways: by users talking and by them manipulating the phone. Often the two distractions are mingled, with the user spending a great deal of time with his or her eyes off the road while driving..
For example, unless a cell phone is set up for completely hands-free functioning, it is likely that the user will have to look at the screen in order to dial a number or answer an incoming call. It is certain that the user will have to read the screen if there is a text message. While the user may not realize it, reading the screen of a cell phone while traveling can cause his or her attention to be distracted from the road for the length of a football field. This is extremely dangerous and can result in a serious accident.
Many states now have laws against texting and driving, and some states have laws against using a cell phone at all while behind the wheel. Truck drivers are expected to comply with these laws when they drive in the states where they apply.
Trucking and Distracted Driving—A Deadly Combination
Distracted driving is dangerous for any driver, but it is particularly deadly for semi truck drivers. When truck drivers are distracted and cause an accident, the damage is often worse than when the same type of crash occurs with a passenger car.
Ironically, passenger vehicle occupants are often the ones who suffer most from a truck accident. While 25 percent of truck accident deaths occur with occupants of the truck, three quarters of the deaths in trucking crashes are occupants of other vehicles, pedestrians or bicycle riders. Therefore, a trucker’s distracted driving can harm much more than just the truck driver; often innocent victims are injured or killed as well.
Those who have been the victim of a trucking accident, particularly one that involves distracted driving, can often benefit from the help of a personal injury lawyer. The truck accident attorneys at David & Philpot, P.L. have experience pursuing truck accident claims and also have the knowledge and skills to deal with the challenges of suing a truck driver, a trucking company and other parties who may be responsible for the death or injury of a victim. Fill out our free case evaluation form or contact us directly at 800.360.7015 if you or a loved one has been involved in a semi truck, 18 wheeler, or other commercial truck accident.