It is impossible to stress enough how dangerous driving while using the phone is. Texting, calling someone on the phone, or checking social media updates can take the driver’s focus off the road. It is especially common among young people (the millennials). And today there are more distracted young adult drivers than ever before. On any given day, you are sure to come across one or two drivers who are messaging while driving or when their car is waiting at the red signal. Ontario has active laws against the use of any hand-held cell phone. Offenders may have to pay a fine of up to $3000. Their license may also be suspended and there will also be demerit points. But many choose to defy the law nonetheless and become a danger to not just themselves but to others around them as well.
What constitutes using the phone while driving?
If you do any of the following on your phone while you are driving, it would be illegal
- Messaging on WhatsApp or messenger
- Posting on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram
- Reading or sending e-mails
- Catching up on work through your phone
- Updating your song playlist
Basically, anything that you use your phone for should not be done while you are driving, even if you are waiting at the signal.
Why do some people use their phones while driving?
There could be myriad reasons why people choose to be on their phones when they should be focused on their driving. The temptation may strike any of us, but for the sake of our own wellbeing, we must resist.
Here are some of the most common reasons that make people use their phones while driving-
- They have a long commute ahead of them and they are bored.
- People think they are multitaskers who can do both at once, especially people who have been driving along that route for ages and have grown complacent.
- Some people feel a desperate need to always be connected and so they call up their friends or family because they have time on their hands while driving.
- People are addicted to social media. They cannot wait to update their stories or heck how many likes their post has garnered.
- Finally, another very common reason is that many people harbor the illusion that an accident can’t happen to them. They know of the dangers of being distracted while driving but it does not register.
A look at the dangers and the prevalence of the trend of driving while using the phone
- 1 out of every 5 drivers has confessed to browsing the internet while driving
- Calling someone on the phone while driving ratchets up the likelihood of causing an accident by 2.8 times.
- Texting or messaging while driving increases the possibility of being in an accident by 23 times.
- 26% of all car crashes result from driving while using a cell phone.
- 33% of Canadians confessed they were using their phones while they had stopped at the red light.
- 94 % of teenage drivers have admitted that they are aware of the dangers of using their phones while driving and yet 35% of them still do it.
- Smartphones rank number one in the list of things that distract drivers.
- 25% of teenage drivers have confessed that they answer at least one text message every time they drive.
- 55% of teenage drivers and 77% of adult drivers are confident that they can drive and use the phone simultaneously without risking anyone’s life.
- Texting while driving increases the time when the drivers’ eyes are not on the road by 400%.
- It takes merely 3 seconds of attention lapse for an accident to happen.
- It takes a shocking 27 seconds for your brain to shift its attention back to driving and coordinate the hand-eye-feet movement once you put your phone aside.
- When you use the phone for messaging, the temporal lobe of your brain becomes active. But driving requires the efforts of your parietal lobe, which takes a back seat when the temporal lobe is active. That is why you cannot focus on the two disparate things at once.
- When you do not keep your phone on silent mode and hear a social media alert, it triggers dopamine secretion in your brain which makes you want to check the notification immediately.
What are the dangers of driving while on the phone?
There are many risks associated with driving while using the phone. Some are dangerous and some that many people are not aware of-
- You will have to pay fines when you are caught.
- You will establish a poor driving record
- Your driving record and your traffic tickets will raise your car insurance rate.
- You could crash your car into a tree or a median divider
- Your car can veer into the opposite lane of traffic
- You can rear-end another car or collide head-on with another in the opposite lane of traffic
- You could run a red light
- You could ram your car into a pedestrian.
- Any of the accidents mentioned can result in grievous injuries. You, your passengers, the passengers of other cars or pedestrians can be hurt.
- In the worst-case scenario, driving while using the phone can result in death. If you escape unscathed you could be sued for wrongful death.
If you have been in an accident that was caused by a driver who was distracted because he/she was using the phone, then you are entitled to compensation and we as personal injury lawyers can help you acquire that.
At Claim Settlement, our network of lawyers we connect you with have over 20 years of experience in handling personal injury and accident cases and have helped clients recover the maximum compensation in claim settlements. Our initial consultation is absolutely free and you don’t pay your lawyer until you receive the compensation you deserve. If you have suffered an injury or been in an accident call us at 1-833-892-5246 for a free consultation or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org