​Distracted Driving and Auto Accidents: What You Need to Know

According to a recent Cambridge Mobile Telematics (CMT) study, distracted driving is now a leading cause of car accidents in the United States. Specifically, the study found that 52% of all accidents involved distracted driving in the form of at least one driver being on their cell phone at the time of the accident. With this new information, it’s no wonder that driving on public roads is now more dangerous than ever before, with the United States leading the globe in fatal car accidents.

In a recent study of individual states and their annual traffic deaths, it was also revealed that South Carolina ranks #6 in a list of states with the worst drivers. In fact, South Carolina has one of the worst car wrech death rates among all 50 states in the country, with nearly 1,000 fatalities a year.

This is all sobering information; but what does it mean for you as a licensed driver in South Carolina?

Be on the Defensive

More than ever, it’s important to practice defensive driving as a means of protecting yourself and your passengers on the road. Essentially, the principles of defensive driving boil down to always assuming the worst of other drivers and acting accordingly. It means, never making the assumption that driver in the next lane over sees that you’re trying to merge and will leave space for you. Instead, it means assuming that the driver does not see you and preparing to slow down or make evasive maneuvers as needed to avoid an accident.

Avoid Distracted Driving Yourself

Most drivers are guilty of distracted driving at some point. Even if you follow a strict “no cell phones while driving” rule, you may still find yourself driving while distracted if you’re holding a conversation with passengers in the car, eating while driving, or even listening to the radio at a high volume. While the majority of distracted driving accidents are smartphone-related, this is not the only manifestation of distracted driving.

Of course, if you do fight the temptation to use your phone while driving, there are some steps you can take to stay focused on the road. Turn your phone on silent (or shut off your phone completely) as soon as you start your car, and place your phone into a glove box or other nearby compartment to keep it out of your sight.

Involved in An Accident, Contact Your Attorney

If you’ve been the victim of an accident caused by a distracted driver, it’s also important to know your rights. Ryan Montgomery, Attorney at Law, is here to help you with offices in both Greenville and Columbia. Contact us today to tell us more about your case and secure the representation you need.