How To Deal With A Texting Driver
Why is the car in front of you speeding, slamming on their breaks, or weaving in their lane? They’re probably texting!
Every day, around 660,000 Americans use their cell phone while driving. Teen drivers are particularly guilty of this — 94% of teens admit to texting and driving. These statistics are alarming, considering that everyone should know the dangers of texting and driving by now.
Cell phone use leads to 1.6 million car crashes every year. This means means that 1 out of 4 accidents are caused by distracted driving. 11 young drivers are killed every day as a result of cell phone use while driving. And of course, hopefully everyone knows one of the most commonly cited statistic about texting: in the five seconds it takes someone to look down at their phone, they can travel the length of an entire football field in their car.
Knowing these numbers, why would anyone choose to text and drive?
Hopefully, you’re a responsible driver. We’re sure you know to put your phone down and keep your eyes on the road! But what can you do to keep yourself safe from people who make reckless driving decisions?
Staying alert on the roads is your first step to preventing a distracted driving accident. Look out for other drivers. A texting driver might exhibit certain driving behaviors, such as
- Weaving in between lanes
- Drifting to one side of their lane
- Driving too slowly
- Slamming on their brakes suddenly
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Not noticing traffic signals, like failing to safely move when the light turns green
If you are at a spotlight next to another car, or in a taller vehicle, like a truck, you can sometimes even see a driver with their cell phone out. When you see a driver who is texting or otherwise distracted, try to safely move away from them.
If you are truly concerned about a texting driver, pull over a call 911 to report them. If you can, memorize their license plate number, and remember information like car model and color. Be sure to give the other driver’s direction of travel, too. Remember, 911 is for emergencies. Only call to report another driver if you are legitimately concerned for the well-being of yourself and others on the roads. And of course, make sure to safely pull over to make the call — you are reporting a texting driver, after all, so don’t commit the same crime yourself!
Unfortunately, you cannot always protect yourself from other people’s choices. Distracted drivers may run red lights, speed, or perform other unpredictable maneuvers, giving even the most responsible of drivers little time to react. If you are injured by a texting driver, consult a personal injury attorney to learn more about your rights.
The attorneys at Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes represent those involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other types of personal injury matters. Our firm is one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Tampa Bay. There are no attorneys’ fees or costs unless we prevail for you. Call our office 24 hours a day at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.