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April brings awareness to distracted driving car accidents

Most people in Florida and elsewhere own a cellphone and keep it with them at all times. While we may enjoy being easily accessible and being able to contact others at a moment's notice, cellphone use can sometimes be dangerous. This is especially true when a person tries to use a cellphone while driving.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that across the United States, each day nine people lose their lives and over 1,000 suffer injuries in car accidents where distracted driving is a factor. To help shine light on this important issue and with the aim of reducing the number of car accidents involving distracted driving, April has been designated as the national distracted driving awareness month.

There are a variety of ways a motorist can be distracted while driving. When we think of distractions, we may automatically assume the motorist at fault was using a cellphone while driving. However, there are other ways a motorist can be distracted while behind the wheel. For example, eating, grooming, trying to tune the radio or manipulate a GPS device takes the motorist's hands off the wheel, eyes off the road and attention off the task of driving. Even talking to other passengers in the vehicle can be distracting enough to cause a car crash.

This is significant, as even taking your eyes off the road for a mere three seconds, if you are driving on the interstate, is the equivalent of driving down the length of a football field with your eyes closed. It is no wonder, then, that distracted driving causes car accidents. All motorists have the duty to drive in a manner that is safe and reasonable under the circumstances. If they breach this duty and cause a car accident that injures another person, the motorist at-fault may be held responsible for the crash.

It is up to all of us to prevent distracted driving accidents. When we drive, our full attention must be given to the task at hand. Multi-tasking is great at home or in the workplace, but not when you're behind the wheel. Those who are injured due to the actions of a distracted driver may want to determine what their legal options are for pursuing compensation for the losses they suffered.

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