The consequences of distracted driving, speeding, aggressive driving and driving impaired are well known to many drivers. We hear about devastating and fatal crashes in the news all the time. We hear the warnings from transportation officials and safety advocates. Yet, the message doesn't seem to get across to some drivers.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently released its yearly Traffic Safety Culture Index. Researchers from AAA conducted a survey of 2,714 drivers in the fall of 2019 and asked them how they viewed risky driving habits and if they engaged in them themselves. Nearly all survey participants perceived texting and driving and drowsy driving as "very or extremely dangerous."
Many of those participants said that they engaged in some form of risky driving behavior within the last month of being surveyed. Nearly half of them were also aware that this behavior could get them pulled over and cited by police.
Continuing the same risky behavior after a crash
Drivers who had previously been involved in crashes were also found to continue the same risky behavior within the last month. Here are the survey results for drivers who were involved in recent crashes:
- 50% admitted to talking on cellphones
- 43% admitted to texting and driving
- 39% admitted to running red lights
A similar study was conducted by AAA in 2018. This time, researchers found that drivers:
- Talked on cellphones 9% less than in 2018
- Drove while drowsy or texted 3% less than in 2018
Crash prevention starts with responsibility
Engaging in risky driving behavior is a conscious choice many drivers make. AAA offers some tips on how drivers can behave more responsibly, break bad habits and significantly reduce the likelihood of a crash:
- Cellphones should stay out of reach while driving. Calling, texting, and app features should be disabled to prevent distracted driving.
- Drivers should allow themselves plenty of time to reach their destinations in order to avoid speeding and aggressive driving. Slippery and hazardous roads should never be underestimated. Drivers should be prepared to reduce their speed during these conditions.
- Nobody should get behind the wheel if they feel too drowsy to drive. Even when drowsy drivers don't fall asleep at the wheel, they can experience poor concentration, delayed reaction time, and poor judgment.
- Those who consume alcohol, recreational drugs or certain prescription drugs should find safer alternatives to driving. Perhaps find a designated driver, summon a taxi or rideshare, or avoid travel altogether.
- All drivers and passengers should wear seatbelts. They can not only save lives, but also reduce the likelihood of severe injuries.
If you or a loved one was injured in a crash because another driver failed to take these safety precautions, contact the Law Offices of Scott M. Miller, PLLC to learn about the legal options available to you. We offer free consultations to clients in Longwood and greater Orlando, Florida.