Many people think distracted driving involves drivers who are paying more attention to their smartphones than the road in front of them. However, distractions caused by passengers are often overlooked as a cause of distracted driving accidents.
How Passengers Can Lead to Distracted Driving Accidents
Any driver interaction with a passenger can potentially be a distraction, but here are some common scenarios that can lead to accidents:
- A driver who is arguing with his or her significant other can become too upset to concentrate on driving safely.
- A parent transporting young children may turn away from the road to provide snacks or a toy—or mediate fights between siblings.
- Teenagers who are inexperienced behind the wheel may get distracted by friends who are singing to a favorite song or talking about their plans for the day.
While it’s easy to avoid certain behaviors behind the wheel such as personal grooming and eating, it’s not realistic to expect that drivers never travel with passengers. However, experts recommend reducing the risk of accidents by keeping communication to a minimum. If you are traveling with children and need to retrieve a toy, snack, or book, pull over to a safe location first.
Limiting the number of passengers in a vehicle is also a good way to reduce the risk of accidents. One recent Australian study found that two or more passengers in a vehicle doubles the risk of an accident.
Protecting Your Rights After an Accident
If you’ve been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you are entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering, as well as any associated property damage. Under Louisiana law, you have one year to file a personal injury claim for the harm you have suffered.
Have You Been Injured In A Louisiana Car Accident?
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Alexandria office directly at 318.541.8188 to schedule your free consultation.