California drivers have more access to technology than ever before. While this can help immensely by giving everyone an easily accessible navigation system, a way to contact authorities, and so on, it has also created many dangers. In particular, distracted driving is on the rise due in no small part to technology.
The Federal Communications Commission states that distracted driving has risen to more deadly levels than ever before, even competing with drunk driving for the most dangerous activity on the road. According to their numbers, 660,000 drivers are using their cellphones every single daylight moment, whether it’s to check texts or messages, browse sites, or even using it for a legitimate purpose like a navigational application. Because of this, over 1,161 people are injured daily in crashes that were caused by distracted driving behavior. An average of 8 people die daily for the same reason.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, defines distracted driving as any behavior that takes a driver’s attention away from the road. This can include everything from putting on makeup to eating food. Arguing with other passengers, trying to wrangle kids or pets, changing music, and having conversations are also top contenders. However, nothing appears to be quite as widespread or deadly as texting – or using a phone in general – seems to be. This is why there are laws in many states that prevent drivers from holding or using their phone.
The continued and persistent problem of distracted driving has taken many lives so far. With nationwide campaigns being launched to raise awareness and force distracted drivers to face harsher penalties, anyone caught driving while distracted can expect some hefty consequences.