Distracted driving: What Florida victims should know

Distracted driving is becoming a major issue in today’s society, and it seems likely to only increase as more technology and functions are added to cars. With the on-board GPS systems, Bluetooth, built-in DVD players and the problems of texting or using a smartphone while driving, Florida drivers are never at a loss for something to take their attentions away from the road.

Just because these distractions are present, however, does not mean that drivers have to engage with them. Distracted driving can cause a driver to fail to notice stopped or slowed traffic, veer onto the shoulder or cross lane lines. Anytime a driver’s full attention is not on the traffic and road conditions, the chances for an accident increase.

Distracted driving accidents can be especially serious because these types of accidents can often occur straighter roads, such as interstate highways, which allow for higher rates of speeds. Because there is less chance of stop-and-go traffic or another driver suddenly braking or turning, drivers may feel more comfortable multitasking in these conditions. One of the most serious types of car accident injuries is an injury to the spinal cord. Spinal cord injuries are often severe and permanent, requiring the victim to use specialized equipment and receive medical treatments and surgeries long after the accident.

Drivers who multi-task or answer emails and texts while driving are not upholding their responsibilities to others on the road. While at-fault drivers can face citations and even criminal charges in some cases, victims also have the right to file personal injury lawsuits through the civil courts to seek compensation for expenses, treatments and pain and suffering.