Research Reveals Causes of Fatal Distracted Driving Accidents

Distracted driving played a role in approximately 10 percent of more than 65,000 fatal car accidents in the United States in 2010 and 2011, according to an analysis of federal crash data by Erie Insurance.

The Fatality Analysis Reporting System, a traffic fatality database organized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, provided the statistics used in the study. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety contributed to the report as well.

Top 10 Distractions

Researchers analyzed the data to identify the top 10 distractions that led to lethal automobile crashes in the two years studied. They also calculated the percentage of distracted-driving accidents caused by certain types of diversions.

  1. Daydreaming was the biggest distraction, causing 62 percent of fatal distracted-driving collisions.
  2. Texting and other cell phone use, 12 percent.
  3. Looking at something or someone outside the vehicle, 7 percent.
  4. Passengers causing distractions, 5 percent.
  5. Using or reaching for devices such as GPS or MP3 players, 2 percent.
  6. Eating or drinking, 2 percent.
  7. Adjusting audio or climate control, 2 percent.
  8. Adjusting built-in devices such as mirrors or using integrated navigation systems, 1 percent.
  9. Moving objects, such as pets or bugs, 1 percent.
  10. Smoking, lighting or putting out cigarettes, 1 percent.

Staying Safe in South Carolina

South Carolina lawmakers are considering legislation to ban texting while driving and prohibit cellphone use for some drivers. Despite the current lack of statewide distracted driving laws, a distracted driver who causes a fatal car accident can still face charges and be held accountable in a civil lawsuit.

Drivers can protect themselves and their families by not texting or talking on the phone while they are on the road.

Also, parents should be aware that they can be role models for their children. Remaining focused while behind the wheel sets a positive example for your children.

Need Legal Help?

Distracted drivers put everyone at risk. If you or a loved one has been injured in a South Carolina automobile accident because of somebody else’s negligence, contact our South Carolina personal injury attorneys at Joye Law Firm.

Whether you need guidance on accidents involving distracted drivers, reckless driving or some other type of car crash, call 888-594-7734 or use our online form so our attorneys can offer you advice about your rights.