The sight of paramedics, police, or fire crews responding to an accident or other roadside emergencies can cause motorists to engage in the dangerous practice of rubbernecking that can result in yet another accident. Add the distraction of a phone to the mix and sometimes first responders get hurt or killed.
In fact, new research reveals that many drivers are profoundly distracted by their phones when encountering emergency personnel working roadside accidents. In a National Safety Council survey, over 70 percent of drivers admitted to snapping pictures, taking videos or texting on their phones when driving by emergency workers – sixty percent said they post to social media.
As a result, workers on the road are put at increased risk for injury or death. Sixteen percent of drivers say that they have struck or nearly struck emergency responders while driving by the scene of an accident and, unfortunately, just last year, forty first responders were killed on the side of the road, up 60 percent from the previous year.
Distracted driving is dangerous claiming thousands of lives every year. In 2017, over three thousand people lost their lives to distracted driving. Any activity that diverts attention from driving, such as talking to passengers in your car or fiddling with the stereo is dangerous. Texting while driving is by far the most alarming distraction, some saying it is akin to driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed and all too many motorists are doing it.
Driving requires a motorist’s full attention and choosing to drive distracted can lead to accidents that can hurt the distracted driver, their passengers, other motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians alike. Vulnerable workers on the roadside hardly stand a chance against someone distracted on their phone.
If you or a family member has been injured by a distracted driver in a car accident, contact the Des Moines distracted driving personal injury attorney Marc Humphrey for immediate assistance today at 515-331-3510.