Memes, other social media may be deadly distractions on the road

Distracted driving can be deadly. Nevertheless, many drivers in New York engage in it on a regular basis. Cellphone use is becoming especially widespread behind the wheel. Wakefield Research has recently conducted an online study regarding distracted driving that involved 2,000 U.S. respondents. Root Insurance, a company offering insurance incentives to motorists who avoid cellphone use, recently shared the results.

Overall, participants used their cellphones while driving for an average of 13 minutes a day. Almost two in five said they do not bother to put down their cellphones when they see law enforcement around. In spite of this, 89% were critical of Uber and Lyft drivers who text and drive, saying they would leave a bad rating on such operators. Another 90% considered themselves superior drivers to ride-hailing employees.

Almost half of the respondents claimed that distracted driving was their No. 1 concern when on the road. Nearly 100% ranked phone use among their top three distractions. Among phone-related distractions, the most common was group chats (52% mentioned them). Next, 33% admitted that social media, including news feeds and memes, would frequently take their eyes from the road. Another 18% said the same for streaming shows, movie trailers and other videos.

Cellphones are far from the only distraction available to drivers. Even eating, drinking and talking with passengers can make drivers inattentive. If a negligent driver causes a car accident, an innocent victim could seek compensation for their economic and non-economic losses. It's generally a good idea to retain legal counsel because auto insurance companies can be aggressive in denying claims or getting victims to take low settlements.

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