Important Statistics for Distracted Driving Awareness Month 2022

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April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month: Important Statistics for 2022

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month: Important Statistics for 2022

Apr 18, 2022

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month, and organizations like the American Automobile Association (AAA) are working to highlight the dangers of risky behavior such as texting while behind the wheel. This year’s theme for Distracted Driving Awareness Month offered by the AAA is:

Are You Driving Intexicated?

As the AAA notes:

Whether it’s texting, calling, navigating, or something else, using your cellphone while driving can be dangerous. In fact, texting and driving can have the same consequences as drinking and driving: deaths and injuries. Help reduce the number of these preventable tragedies by putting down your phone – because lives depend on it. You don’t drive intoxicated, so don’t drive intexticated.

Important Statistics for Distracted Driving Awareness Month 2022

With April being National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, Dordulian Law Group (DLG) has put together some important statistics for 2022. We’ll also review some tips for avoiding distracted driving car accidents and look at how to file a claim to recover financial compensation after a motor vehicle crash injury.

What is Distracted Driving?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines distracted driving as any activity that diverts attention from driving. Some common examples of distracted driving include:

  • Handling/taking phone calls

  • Viewing/sending text messages

  • Eating/drinking

  • Talking to people in the vehicle

  • Daydreaming

  • Talking to people outside of the vehicle

  • Changing the radio station/synching a Bluetooth enabled device

  • Trying to pass objects to passengers or grab items that our out of immediate reach

In general, types of distracted driving can fall into one of three categories:

  • Visual distractions

  • Manual distractions

  • Cognitive distractions

The vast majority of people have engaged in distracted driving at one time or another. However, because many individuals participate in distracted driving but do not suffer major consequences, few effective deterrents exists to curb these dangerous habits. But statistics prove that distracted driving is a significant problem that leads to thousands of senseless deaths every year.

Distracted Driving Statistics Updated for 2022

The NHTSA confirms the following information:

  • Using a cell phone while driving creates “enormous potential for deaths and injuries” on U.S. roads.

  • In 2020, 3,142 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers.

  • Texting is the “most alarming” form of distracted driving.

  • Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for five seconds (at 55 mph, that’s the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed).

The following statistics are confirmed via insurance comparison site The Zebra. The company’s findings are based on a 2021 survey conducted with a random sample of American drivers:

  • Many survey takers claim they never drive while distracted, though others admit to engaging in several risky behaviors while driving (including texting while behind the wheel).

  • 52.5% of respondents reporting eating while driving (down 4.2% from 2020’s respondents).

Other behaviors which survey takers admitted to engaging in include:

  • Texting (23.6%)

  • Taking photos (11.7%)

  • Applying makeup (6.5%)

  • Drinking while driving (3.4%)

The Zebra survey also looked into how many Americans view distracted driving as either dangerous or not. The findings indicate the following:

  • 36.4% of participants completely agree that using a mobile device hinders your ability to drive.

  • However, 36% still admit to engaging in activities with a cellphone while driving.

  • Less than half of participants completely agree that texting and driving is just as dangerous as drinking and driving (despite numerous studies proving both activities limit your capacity for awareness and focus).

  • Only 4.1% of participants ages 25-34 claimed that they felt a high degree of pressure to respond to text messages while driving.

  • In total, 12.1% of respondents in that age group (25-34) felt any pressure to answer a text at all.

  • 17.9% of the 18-24 age group felt the most pressure to respond to a text while driving. Interestingly, it is also this age group (18-24) that is most often in accidents, according to the NHTSA.

Is Distracted Driving More Dangerous Than Drunk Driving?

Data compiled by the Transport Research Laboratory found that “writing a text message slows driver reactions by 35%, while drinking alcohol up to the legal limit slows reactions by 12%.” Nevertheless, many Americans are still unconvinced that drunk driving is more dangerous than driving while distracted, according to The Zebra.

When comparing distracted driving to drunk driving, the following statistics are worth noting:

  • Loss of life
    • Drunk driving claims approximately 29 lives per day (more than 10,000 per year).

    • Distracted driving claims approximately nine lives per day (approximately 3,500 per year).
  • Economic impact
    • Distracted driving costs society $40 billion a year.

    • DUIs cost society $44 billion per year.
  • Violations by state
    • Only 47 states have laws against distracted driving (while 16 have specific laws against texting and driving, implementing a texting ban).

    • All 50 states have laws against drunk driving and law enforcement knows how to identify a drunk driver.
  • Legal fines
    • Drivers can receive a fine of up to $500 for a distracted driving offense.

    • Drivers receive a fine of $1,500 for their first DUI.

For additional information on how the dangers of texting and driving compare to those of drunk driving, please visit DLG’s in-depth blog.

Are U.S. Roads Safer or More Dangerous in 2022?

The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that the nation’s roads and highways are more dangerous now than in recent years. As the NSC notes, auto-related deaths are up 9% as mileage rebounded in 2021 from the COVID-19 pandemic, and an average of eight people are killed and hundreds more injured every day in distraction-related crashes.

The National Safety Council (NSC) provided preliminary semiannual estimates for motor vehicle crashes in 2021, which included the following statistics:

  • Total motor-vehicle deaths for 2021 equaled 46,020 (a 9% increase from 42,339 in 2020 and an 18% increase from 39,107 in 2019).

  • Mileage in 2021 rebounded 11% from COVID-19 lows in 2020 and only lags 2019 mileage by 1%.

  • The estimated mileage death rate in 2021 is 1.43 deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (down 2% from 1.46 in 2020 but up 19% from 1.20 in 2019).

  • The estimated number of nonfatal medically consulted injuries resulting from crashes in 2021 was 5,246,000.

5 Tips to Prevent Distracted Driving

5 Tips to Prevent Distracted Driving
1. Focus on the road/your driving:

Before driving, it’s important to consciously commit to focusing all of your attention on the road and not letting distractions interfere. While behind the wheel, it’s recommended to always drive defensively – actively scanning the road, using your mirrors, and watching out for others (including pedestrians, bicyclists, and scooters).

2. Make adjustments before you begin driving:

Ensure your vehicle navigation system (GPS) is programmed before beginning a journey. Additionally, it’s important to check and adjust seats, mirrors, climate controls, and sound systems before driving.

3. Ensure children and pets are secured within the vehicle:

Securing all items before driving – including children, pets, and belongings – is an important safety tip. Doing so can help ensure that the driver does not have to reach for an object (and take his or her eyes off the road in the process).

4. Finish eating, dressing, and personal grooming at home:

Avoid eating, looking in the vanity mirror, applying makeup, or doing anything behind the wheel that may take your focus away from driving.

5. Remove the potential for electronic distractions:

While it’s legal to use a cellphone with a handsfree device behind the wheel in California, it’s strongly recommended that drivers only make calls in emergencies. Furthermore, it’s important to remember to never use text or send emails while driving.

What Damages Can be Awarded in a California Distracted Driving Car Accident?

If you’ve been injured in a distracted driving car accident, you may wish to file a civil claim to recover critical financial compensation. The most common examples of distracted driving car accident damages that may be sought in civil lawsuits are broken down below according to type.

Common California Distracted Driving Car Accident Economic Damages:

  • Medical expenses

  • Emergency department treatment

  • Physical Therapy

  • Rehabilitation

  • Lost Wages

  • Lost Earning Capacity

Common California Distracted Driving Car Accident Non-Economic Damages:

  • Pain and suffering

  • Emotional trauma

  • Reduced quality of life

  • Scarring or other serious injury

  • Compensation for loss of a limb or disfigurement

Hiring a DLG car accident lawyer can help ensure your personal injury claim is maximized, and that you recover all applicable damages after an incident due to negligence. Our Car Accident Division is led by Sam Dordulian, a former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County with more than 25 years of experience helping injured victims secure the maximum financial compensation they deserve.

To learn more about how important it can be to have an experienced DLG California car accident lawyer handling your distracted driving case, please visit our recent blog on how pain and suffering damages are calculated in personal injury civil claims.

Contact a Los Angeles, California, Distracted Driving Car Accident Lawyer

Proving liability in a California distracted driving car accident case requires skill and experience in order to secure the maximum financial compensation you need to make a complete recovery – physically, emotionally, and financially. Fighting to recover intangible and hard to quantify damages such as pain and suffering or emotional trauma can be challenging, and that’s where DLG’s experienced car accident injury lawyers can help.

We have the proven results you need for peace of mind throughout every step of the car accident claims process. We won’t settle for anything less than a maximum financial damages payout for your distracted driving car accident injury lawsuit.

Do I Need a Distracted Driving Car Accident Lawyer?

Hiring a DLG car accident lawyer to handle your injury claim can be in your overall best interest for a number of reasons. In fact, personal injury victims who hire private attorneys often secure greater financial compensation for their claims.

For example, the Insurance Research Council (IRC) recently conducted a study which confirmed the following personal injury claim statistics:

  • Settlements for injured claimants were 40% higher when they had secured private legal representation.

  • The average insurance payout was 3.5 times higher for injured victims who hired private attorneys (when compared to those representing themselves).

  • 85% of all money paid by insurance companies for bodily injuries is received by victims who have secured representation from a private personal injury attorney.

With DLG, your distracted driving car accident injury consultation is always free, confidential, and without any obligation. We’ll review the facts of your case and provide you with all available legal options to ensure your rights are protected and the maximum financial damages award you deserve is pursued. We serve distracted driving car accident injury clients throughout California as well as the United States.

Some of the local areas DLG serves include:

  • Los Angeles

  • Long Beach

  • Glendale

  • Torrance

  • North Hollywood

  • Burbank

  • Pasadena

  • San Diego

  • Bakersfield

  • Sacramento

  • Fresno

  • Riverside

  • San Francisco

  • Granada Hills

  • Simi Valley

  • San Fernando Valley

  • Antelope Valley

Ready to file a claim and pursue justice through a financial damages award? Our expert attorneys are available online or by phone now.

Get the Best Legal Representation for Your Distracted Driving Car Accident Injury Claim

DLG’s founder and president, Sam Dordulian, has secured over 100 jury trial victories throughout his decorated career. And our team of dedicated attorneys has expansive experience successfully litigating major car accident cases. We will fight hard to obtain the maximum financial compensation you deserve.

It’s important to file your car accident injury claim as soon as possible. We will work with medical experts and other investigative professionals to gather and preserve crucial evidence that will strengthen your distracted driving car accident injury case.

DLG’s Los Angeles distracted driving car accident lawyers have secured more than $100 million in settlements and verdicts for clients while maintaining a 98% success record. With our No Win/No Fee Guarantee, there is never any upfront cost for our expert car accident legal representation, and you never pay a dime until we successfully secure a maximum financial damages award for your claim.

Contact a DLG Los Angeles, California, car accident lawyer today at 818-322-4056 to arrange for a free consultation.

Don’t miss the deadline for filing your distracted driving car accident injury lawsuit. Injured victims who fail to file claims within the statute of limitations typically waive their right to seek critical financial compensation for damages.


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