When you obtained a Louisiana license to operate a motor vehicle, you no doubt understood that you instantly became legally bound to adhere to all traffic and safety laws and regulations associated with driving a car in this or any other state. Certain driving behaviors can prompt criminal charges against you, such as getting behind the wheel with a blood alcohol content level of .08 or higher.
Some driving habits are not necessarily classifiable as crimes; however, exhibiting such behaviors while driving may place you and anyone in your vicinity at risk for collision or injury. Like all good drivers in this state and across the country, you likely try to avoid distracted driving or reckless driving maneuvers, but what about the drivers who don't? If one hits you, you might spend weeks or months in recovery; in fact, some injuries can have permanent, life-changing consequences.
Distractions that can be just as dangerous as intoxication
Most people understand how menacing a drunk driver can be toward the safety of his or her passengers and other nearby travelers. The following list, however, shows minor driving distractions that can greatly increase the risk for injury-causing collisions:
- Many drivers don't think it's a big deal to eat or drink non-alcoholic beverages behind the wheel. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration warns that eating and drinking while driving sparks an estimated 80% increase in collision risk.
- People live busy lives nowadays and are often running behind schedule, perhaps trying to get to work on time or even to a particular social gathering. A driver might not realize how dangerous it is to use a rear-view mirror to comb hair, apply cosmetics, pluck eyebrows, groom facial hair or perform other personal grooming activities while driving.
- If you've ever had a screaming toddler as a passenger while driving, you no doubt understand how stressful it can be. It's always best to avoid trying to address child-related issues while driving, and you can avoid such danger by safely exiting the roadway before handling whatever the situation happens to be.
- Many new car designs include touchscreen radios. These and GPS devices can cause you to take your eyes off the road and hands off the wheel just long enough for a sudden, serious collision to occur.
Touchscreen electronics make listening to music or navigating driving directions easy and convenient, but they can also make traveling highly dangerous. If a driver near you is reading available channel choices and reaching to click preferred options instead of focusing on the task of operating his or her vehicle, you might be the one who suffers severe injuries if he or she loses control of steering and crashes into your vehicle.
If that happens
An uneventful trip to the grocery store, work or anywhere can quickly turn into a tragic situation if a distracted driver hits you. In addition to trying to get off the road, away from moving traffic, seeking medical attention is always another main priority following a motor vehicle collision. Once a Louisiana accident victim receives medical care, he or she may also want to contact family members, his or her insurance agent, as well as a personal injury law attorney, in case the incident leads to litigation.