CDC report calls attention to distracted driving statistics

In February 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a new report on distracted driving auto accident statistics. The CDC is hoping to call public attention to the danger that distracted driving still poses on U.S. roads, even after public safety campaigns in several states have tried to educate people about the risks.

Distracted driving statistics

The CDC report offers up some sobering distracted driving auto accident statistics: each day nine people die and another 1,060 suffer injuries in auto accidents attributable to distracted driving. That works out to one death every 2.6 hours and 44 injuries per hour every day. The report also recounted the NHTSA's distracted driving auto accident statistics from 2011: 3,331 deaths and 387,000 injuries.

Safety experts suggest that the number of fatalities and injuries stemming from distracted driving auto accidents is underreported. The statistics on distracted driving only reflect the number of accidents that police reported as resulting from distracted driving. In many cases, police officers may suspect that distracted driving was a factor in an auto accident but may not be able to prove it.

Types of driver distractions

The CDC's report noted that all forms of driver distractions, such as eating, drinking, using a cellphone, programming a navigation system and changing a radio station, are all potentially hazardous. However, the CDC pointed to sending text messages and emails as one of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving, as it encompasses all three types of driver distractions:

  • Visual: distractions that divert a driver's eyes from the road
  • Manual: distractions that cause the driver to take his or her hands off the steering wheel
  • Cognitive: distractions that redirect a driver's thoughts from driving to something else.

Handling distracted driving auto accidents

As the distracted driving auto accident statistics demonstrate, distracted drivers cause accidents, everything from minor fender-benders to major head-on collisions and rollovers. The injuries people sustain from these accidents range from soft tissue damage to spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries. Those who have been injured because of others' negligence should not have to bear the cost of these injuries. Instead, those responsible for these accidents should pay. If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident caused by a distracted driver, speak with a personal injury attorney with a proven track record of obtaining just benefits and compensation for auto accident victims to help you pick up the pieces and move forward.