How to avoid distracted driving

Drivers in Texas have a host of distractions that they must guard against. Those who fail to properly deal with diversions run the risk of getting into car accidents. Distracted driving-related crashes took the lives of 3,166 people in 2017, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Common distractions range from phone use to simple actions like eating or talking with passengers.

To avoid distractions, drivers should try to keep away from their phones. It's best to only make emergency calls after safely pulling over. Even hands-free devices will take one's attention from the road. Drivers should not eat behind the wheel, nor should they allow passengers to do so because food and drink spills can sidetrack drivers.

Speaking of passengers, simply having a lot of people in the car can be a distraction, especially with teen drivers. On the other hand, a reliable passenger could actually help the driver by handling the navigation system and adjusting the radio.

Drivers become inattentive with fatigue, so drowsy driving must be addressed. This means getting adequate sleep and treating any sleep-related disorders. The signs of drowsiness include heavy eyelids, yawning, trouble focusing and the inability to stay in a lane.

Someone who survives an auto accident caused by a distracted driver might wonder about filing a personal injury claim. The first step may be to consult with a lawyer. If the case holds up under this state's rule of modified comparative fault, the lawyer may bring in investigators to build up the case with proof of the at-fault party's negligence. Medical professionals may come in to determine the extent of the victim's injuries.

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