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What Are the Different Types of Distracted Driving?

Distracted driving takes thousands of lives every year across the country and injures hundreds of thousands of people. There are various types of distractions individuals encounter when they get behind the wheel of the vehicle, almost too many to count. However, when we examine information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we can see that there are three main types of distractions.

Visual Distractions

Taking your eyes off of the roadway is a surefire way to collide with another vehicle or fixed object. Perhaps some of the most common visual distractions now revolve around our phones and devices. Sending or reading a text message, browsing social media, filming videos, taking selfies, and more are all various distractions that we would not have thought about three decades ago. However, please keep in mind that there are specific distracted driving cell phone laws in Texas. Violation of these laws could lead to monetary fines.

Visual distractions can also include anything else that takes a person’s eyes off the roadway, including looking at distractions on the roadside, looking at other individuals or objects in the vehicle, and more.

Manual Distractions

Manual distractions when driving involve a person taking their hands off the wheel. Often, there is some overlap between manual distractions and visual distractions. For example, individuals looking at their phones to send a text message may also have to take their hand or hands off the wheel to type out the message.

Drivers can also take their hands off the wheel when reaching for other objects in the vehicle or, as is the case in many situations, simply make a decision to drive with one hand or no hands at all (looking at you, knee drivers).

Cognitive Distractions

Cognitive distractions involve a person’s mind wandering from the driving process. Again, cognitive distractions can almost certainly overlap with visual or manual distractions. It takes brain power (some, at least) to craft a message for social media or to take a selfie or social media video.

However, cognitive distractions do not have to relate to our devices. Simply daydreaming is enough to constitute a cognitive distraction if it takes a person’s mind away from the driving process and possible hazards around them.

Distracted Driving in Texas

Data from the Texas Department of Transportation shows that there were more than 95,000 total vehicle accidents caused by distracted driving during the most recent reporting year of data on file. Out of these incidents, there are 484 fatalities recorded, and more than 40,000 injuries occurred.

Working With a Lawyer

If you or someone you care about has sustained an injury caused by the negligent actions of a distracted driver in Texas, contact an attorney today. A Houston car accident lawyer with experience handling these types of claims can help you deal with the insurance carriers in order to recover the compensation you are entitled to. You need an advocate by your side willing to fully investigate the incident and stand up to the aggressive parties trying to limit your compensation.

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