According to a September 2009 report from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), driver distraction remains a serious cause of catastrophic and fatal motor vehicle accidents on our nation’s roadways. The NHTSA released new statistics regarding driver distraction in 2008:
- There were a total of 34,017 fatal car crashes in 2008, in which 37,261 individuals were killed. Driver Distraction was reported to have been involved in 16 percent of those fatal car crashes in 2008;
- An estimated 2,346,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes in 2008, of which approximately 22 percent of those accidents involved distracted driving.
Recently, increased attention has focused on the dangers of one form of distracted driving: driving while texting or using a cell phone. According to the NHTSA’s report, other methods of distracted driving include “eating, drinking, conversing with passengers, as well as interaction with in-vehicle technologies and portable electronic devices.” The DOT points out that increased “sophistication in these technologies may present greater physical and cognitive challenges for drivers than traditional information sources.”
This study comes as no surprise to experienced Chicago car accident lawyers. Thousands of people are injured or killed each year in car or truck accidents caused by distracted drivers. Hopefully, the NHTSA will shed light on this important safety issue, and cause individuals and businesses to alter their behavior — in the form of safer products and vehicles, and personal accountability.
To speak with a top Chicago car accident attorney, call Passen & Powell at (312) 527-4500 for a free consultation.