Distracted Driving Accident Statistics and Prevention

PennDOT reports that there were 104,475 traffic crashes on Pennsylvania roads in 2020, killing more than 1,000 people and injuring more than 61,000.

This equates to three people fatally injured each day, and one death every eight hours. Distracted driving is a big factor in many of these fatal motor vehicle crashes. 

The NHTSA reports that in 2019, more than 3,000 people were killed in fatal distracted driving accidents, making it the cause of nearly 9 percent of all crash fatalities that year in the U.S. 

What qualifies as distracted driving?

Distracted is defined by the NHTSA as “any activity that diverts attention from driving, including talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, talking to people in your vehicle, fiddling with the stereo, entertainment or navigation system — anything that takes your attention away from the task of safe driving.”

Texting and driving is the biggest distraction and has the most potential for fatalities. Taking five seconds to send or read a text while driving at 55 mph is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed.  

Dangers of distracted driving

It only takes a split second of driving distracted to permanently ruin someone’s life—including your own. From an injury there is no possibility of recovering from, to a fatality, the decision to drive distracted can be catastrophic.

Teenagers and young adults are the most likely to engage in distracted driving. The CDC reports that 25 percent of distracted drivers involved in fatal crashes were young adults aged 20–29, and drivers aged 15-19 were even more likely to be distracted than drivers aged 20 and older.

What should you do if you are injured by a distracted driver?

If you’ve been injured by a distracted driver in Pennsylvania, you might be entitled to punitive damages in addition to compensation. Our team of car accident attorneys represents car accident victims of distracted drivers and people who text while driving. We can help you recover your lost wages, medical bills, pain and suffering, and more. Call our Pennsylvania Car Accident Law Firm for a free consultation at 814-452-6232.

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