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Eating and Driving Might be Greater Danger to Traffic Safety Than Cell Phones

February 15, 2017

Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Observes Eating and Driving Might be Greater Danger to Traffic Safety Than Cell Phones

Enormous efforts have been undertaken to get cell phones out of the hands of drivers. These strategies include public awareness campaigns, laws imposing steep fines, and media coverage of the tragic results of distracted driving. While cell phones still pose a significant threat to public safety, this focus on portable electronic gadgets has ignored the risk of other types of distractions. Eating and drinking behind the wheel of a motor vehicle might constitute the most prevalent and dangerous form of distracted driving. In this blog article, our Atlanta personal injury lawyers explore the dangers associated with eating and driving.

Motorists might find it tempting to assume that the time it takes to pick up and sip a cup of coffee or to unwrap and eat a burger is too short to pose much danger. The reality is that a vehicle traveling at 55 mph can cover the length of a football field when a driver's attention is averted from the roadway for a period as brief as five seconds. While it might take five seconds to feel around in a bag from a fast food restaurant, pull out a burger, undue the wrapper and take a bite, distractions of even shorter duration can lead to dangerous accidents. The time it takes to glance down and grab a cup of coffee can lead to running down a child who has run into the street to retrieve a pet or ball.

Distracted driving accidents also occur when motorists are dealing with the cleanup of a mess from eating or drinking in a vehicle. A hot cup of coffee spilled in a motorist's lap or "special sauce" spilled on the upholstery can distract a driver with scalding heat or a mess that threatens to stain the interior of the vehicle. Moreover, cleaning up a spill or leaked substance from a food or beverage can easily lead to a distracted driving collision.

While drivers eating and driving have not received the attention from the media and lawmakers devoted to texting and driving, there is sufficient data available to establish the scope of the problem.

  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 80 percent of all collisions and 65 percent of near misses are caused by eating and drinking while driving.
  • A study by Lytx found that motorist who eat or drink while operating a motor vehicle are 3.6 times more likely to be involved in a collision.
  • A study conducted by researchers at Leeds University conducted a study indicating that motorists that snack and drive are 44 percent more likely to be involved in a crash and 22 percent more likely to consume a beverage and operate a motor vehicle.
  • Exxon conducted a study involving a thousand drivers that found 70 percent admitted to eating while driving, and 83 percent indicated they drink beverages while driving.

Because proving that a driver was eating or drinking while driving can be difficult, you should speak to a car accident lawyer at Montlick & Associates immediately if you suffer injury because of a distracted driver.

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Montlick and Associates, Attorneys at Law, has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout Georgia and in the Southeast for over 39 years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.

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Category: Auto Accidents

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All information provided by our blogs is general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Consult a Montlick attorney for details about your unique situation.

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