Distracted driving is a real problem in Missouri

An increasing number of accidents in Missouri and elsewhere are caused by distracted driving. Driver distraction has become a monumental problem, and it does not appear to be slowing down.

According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, infotainment systems that are included in most new cars may be making the roads less safe. These systems may help make long drives more interesting, but they also cause many drivers to divert their attention away from driving. In 2017, an estimated 37,150 people were killed on the nation's roadways, which was an increase of more than 10 percent since 2014.

University of Utah researchers conducted the AAA study. It involved 64 participants driving one of five vehicles with built-in infotainment systems. The built-in systems from the car manufacturers all diverted the drivers' attention away from driving to a significant extent. The researchers found that drivers who used Apple and Android apps with the built-in systems but ran them off their smartphones' platforms were less distracted. One company called Nauto installs cameras in fleet vehicles. Nauto found that 67 percent of the accidents that happened in the fleets with the cameras during a four-month period were caused by driver distraction.

Most car accidents are preventable. People may reduce the likelihood that they will be involved in car accidents by keeping their attention focused on the roads at all times when they are driving. Individuals who are distracted by their smartphones or infotainment systems may cause serious accidents. The injured victims of accidents that were caused by distracted drivers might benefit from filing personal injury claims against the responsible parties. This may help them recover fair compensation to pay for all of their related losses that resulted from their accidents. Personal injury lawyers might reach negotiated settlements for their clients that are higher than what they may have been able to recover without help.

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