More than 37,000 people died on America's roads in 2017, according to estimates from the U.S. Department of Transportation. While the number is slightly lower than it was in 2016, it represents a 10 percent increase from 2014. Some California residents may think that distractions caused by new technology are to blame for the increase. While the link between the two has not been definitively made by public safety officials, various studies indicate that technology is a major culprit.
Nauto, a provider of smart cameras for fleet vehicles, studied severe collisions that occurred over a four-month period. Researchers discovered that 67 percent of the crashes were caused by distracted driving. Agero, a provider of vehicle safety and roadside assistance systems, found that drivers aged 17 to 22 are especially susceptible to distraction; they use their phones 12 percent of the time that they're behind the wheel.
An analysis funded by AAA recently studied the effects of built-in infotainment systems on drivers. In the study, 64 participants drove five different vehicles and were asked to use the various features on these systems. They then used the same features on various interfaces that run off smartphones. Researchers found that though the smartphone interfaces were less distracting, all of them required at least a moderate amount of attention from drivers.
As varied as the studies are, they all point to one thing -- the lack of a single cure for distraction. However, victims who suffer auto accident injuries through no fault of their own can still be compensated. One can go to a lawyer and have their case evaluated. A successful claim could cover medical bills, vehicle repair costs and more.