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April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month

Female driver texting on mobile phone while driving.

It's time people open their eyes to the dangers of distracted driving and stay focused on the road

Distracted driving is a dangerous habit that often has deadly consequences. That's why traffic safety officials in Indiana and throughout the U.S. have designated April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. As one of the most common causes of car accidents, distracted driving often results in severe injury or death.

EndDD.org (End Distracted Driving) is a movement from the Casey Feldman Foundation. Casey Feldman was 21 years old when she was tragically killed by a distracted driver. Her parents created EndDD.org to help raise awareness about the dangers of distracted driving so that other families wouldn't have to suffer the same kind of tragic loss that they did.

“I never thought it could happen to my child, but it can happen to you and it can happen to your children,” said Casey's father Joel Feldman in a recent interview. “Just like when you look at somebody, hear somebody’s driven drunk, you think, ‘Oh my God!’ We want it to be the same for distracted driving and I think we can get there.”

What are the different types of distracted driving?

Distracted driving is when an activity takes a driver's attention away from the road. According to safety experts, there are 3 main types of distractions: Manual, Visual, and Cognitive.

  • Manual distractions: This happens when a driver takes their hands off the wheel. Examples of manual distractions include eating, drinking, holding a cell phone or other electronic device, adjusting music, and reaching for something on the floor or in the back seat.
  • Visual distractions: This type of distraction happens when a driver takes their eyes off the road. Looking at your GPS, self-grooming, reading a text or notification on a cell phone, and rubbernecking are common examples of visual distractions.
  • Cognitive distractions: This happens when a driver takes their mind off the task of driving. Examples of cognitive distractions include experiencing strong moods or emotions (e.g., road rage, frustration, anger, sadness), fatigue, talking to someone on the phone or via text, and chatting with passengers.

Texting is one of the most common and most dangerous forms of distracted driving because it can distract a driver manually, visually, and cognitively. According to the Indiana Department of Labor, there are now more crashes involving texting than there are involving alcohol. People who text while driving are 23 times more likely to crash.

Texting and driving in Indiana

Texting and driving threatens the safety of everyone on our roads, including pedestrians and bicyclists. Many people incorrectly assume they can multitask when behind the wheel and claim to be "good" at texting while driving solely because they've yet to suffer the consequences of such reckless behavior.

Make no mistake about it: Texting and driving is extremely dangerous and against the law. As of July 1, 2011, the law in Indiana states that typing, transmitting, or reading e-mails or text messages on a communication device can result in fines of up to $500.

What to do if you were hit by a distracted driver

Accidents caused by distracted drivers often turn into complicated legal cases. That's why it's important to talk to an experienced car accident attorney to get a clear understanding of your legal rights and options—before you talk to an insurance company.

At Glaser & Ebbs, we know how the legal system works in Indiana. Our car accident lawyers have more than 100 years of combined legal experience successfully fighting for crash victims in Fort Wayne, Indianapolis, and throughout the state. Let us aggressively advocate for your best interests and fight for the compensation you deserve.

To learn how we can help you with your potential legal case, contact us today for a free consultation. Our law firm has 6 offices located throughout Indiana, including Fort Wayne and Indianapolis.

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