Why Cell Phone Usage Causes Accidents

Posted on: 23 September 2016

Although many people realize that cell phone usage while driving is dangerous, they may still use their electronic devices when operating a vehicle. As a result, accidents that could be avoided may occur due to the distractions of phone usage.

When people are distracted while driving, they may be more likely to swerve back and forth in a lane, vary in speed, or react to a dangerous situation too late to prevent a collision. Here are a few reasons why cell phone usage can cause an accident:

Your eyes are not on the road.

If you are using a cell phone to text, you will need to look away from the road at least momentarily. In fact, the average amount of time required for you to take your eyes off the road as you text it is about five seconds. Regardless of the road on which you are driving, five seconds of driving blindfolded could lead to an accident.

Some accidents may occur when the vehicle of the distracted motorist strikes a stationary object, such as a fire hydrant or a telephone pole. However, others are likely to happen as the vehicle collides with that of another motorist. If the car in front of a distracted driver slows or stops at a traffic light or stop sign, the texting motorist may not even realize the change in the flow of traffic. In five seconds, there can be multiple changes to traffic conditions. 

If you are tempted to text, ask one of your passengers to enter the text as you advise them of what to say. That way, your eyes can remain on the road. If you are alone in your vehicle, pull into the nearest parking lot so that your car is stationary during the transaction.

Your brain makes using your cell phone addictive.

When you hear an alert indicating that you have received a text or have an incoming call, your brain can make it difficult for you to ignore the sound. The chemicals in your brain, such as dopamine, which are associated with the rewarding high that makes a chemical addiction compulsory, are also associated with cell phone use.

It may be rewarding to see who is calling or texting you, but the accident that may result could be catastrophic. If you have an incoming text or call, allow someone else in the car to answer it. As an additional option, set your phone to silent mode and preset an I-am-driving-right-now text to be automatically forwarded to those trying to reach you.

Most people will understand the danger of texting and driving and would prefer a delayed response over your involvement in an accident.

If you are injured in an automotive accident because another driver was texting or talking on a cell phone, schedule a consultation with a personal injury attorney in your area such as those found at the Law Office of Bernard Bolanos.