When you wake up in the morning to get ready for work, do you ever dread the highly congested traffic situations you know you will likely experience on the way to your job? If so, you are definitely not the only Louisiana commuter who thinks such things. In addition to not looking forward to bumper-to-bumper traffic, you may also worry whether any of the motorists you’ll encounter will be distracted behind their wheels. As they rush to get to work on time, many drivers make dangerous choices.
The problem is that you can’t control what another driver does. If a nearby motorist is distracted, you are the one who may suffer if he or she collides with your vehicle. Studies show there are three main types of driving distractions that place you most at risk for injury, not only during your morning or after-work commute but any time you travel by motor vehicle or as a pedestrian.
Three key words: cognitive, visual and manual
You may not even realize at first that the driver who hit you was distracted because not all driving distractions are immediately apparent. The following list helps to categorize some of the most common types of driving distractions that often lead to collisions resulting in injuries:
- Visual impairments: Where was the driver who hit you looking at the time? “Eyes on the road” is a common safety mantra instructors give to driving students. If the person who caused your collision was looking at a hand-held electronic device, a GPS or even a billboard at the side of the road, you may have grounds for filing a negligence claim to seek compensation for the damages you suffered.
- Cognitive impairments: Daydreaming, conversing with passengers or even using hands-free technology to conduct a business meeting by phone are all types of cognitive distraction that place you and anyone nearby at risk for collision. The person who hit your car may have thought he or she was killing two birds with one stone to participate in a mobile company meeting while driving, but it may also have been the leading causal factor of your accident.
- Manual impairments: Along that same line of thinking, many commuters, workers or busy parents grab lunches to go rather than safely pulling over to stop for a while as they consume their meals. Eating and drinking while driving or otherwise using hands for tasks other than motor vehicle operation and steering increases the risk of collision.
If you’re injured in a Louisiana distracted-driving collision and wish to seek legal accountability against another motorist, you should know that the burden of proof in such cases lies with the plaintiff.
This is why most recovering accident victims pursuing justice in civil courts rely on experienced personal injury attorneys to present their cases for them.