Although we hear about the dangers of talking on our cellphone while driving in the news all the time, it’s actually not the most dangerous activity we engage in on the roadways. Instead, a recent study, published by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), suggests that talking to our passengers is at least 45 percent more dangerous than conversing with someone by phone.
Among the top five factors that cause accidents, conversations with passengers give way to nearly 57 percent of all crashes. Use of a phone, whether it be to text, make a call or look something up is to blame for 12 percent of all wrecks.
Distractions from internal objects inside the car, like the radio or a screen mounted to the dashboard are responsible for all at least 11 percent of all crashes. A passenger’s actions are to blame for 7 percent of all car accidents. The remaining percentage may include other types of distractions or a combination of more than one of the aforementioned.
Another Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) study mentions that we can even be distracted when driving all alone. In fact, in at least 12 percent of all times drivers take to the road, they’re engaged in a conversation on their phone. In 8 percent of all instances, an individual is either adjusting the temperature in the car, smoking or changing the radio station.
In at least 6 percent of the time a motorist sets out to drive, he or she does so with something other than a phone in his or her hand. Five percent of the time, the driver is either talking to him or herself, dancing or singing along with the music. Finally, in 3 percent of all instances, the motorist eats while driving.
If there’s one message to be gained from these studies, it’s that while phones cause distractions while driving, there are plenty of other factors that can distract as well. If you’ve been involved in a serious accident that you believe was caused by a driver who was distracted at the time, then a Houston car crash attorney can help you recover medical costs associated with your accident.
Source: The Washington Post, “This surprising activity is more dangerous than using your phone while driving,” Jacob Bogage, accessed Aug. 15, 2017