Six Reasons Why Distracted Driving is on the Rise in Florida

Distracted driving continues to be one of the most underreported causes of car accidents in Florida. The number of distracted driving accidents continues to increase in Clearwater and throughout Florida.

Six Reasons Why Distracted Driving is on the

Roman & Gaynor

February 18, 2021 11:00 AM

Distracted driving continues to be one of the most underreported causes of car accidents in Florida. During 2018, there were over 150,000 distracted driving accidents reported. However, how many more drivers failed to state the real reason they crashed into another vehicle?

The consequences of distracted driving can be costly. Drivers may be financially liable for the damages caused by the accident. Car accident victims may sustain life-threatening injuries or permanent impairment because of a distracted driver.

Even though state and federal campaigns try to raise awareness of the dangers of distracted driving, the number of distracted driving accidents continues to increase in Clearwater and throughout Florida.

Six Reasons Drivers Are Distracted Behind the Wheel

Let’s discuss six of the reasons why distracted driving is on the rise in Florida.

1 - Increases in Cell Phone Use

Florida’s Wireless Communications While Driving Law went into effect on July 1, 2019. The intent was to require drivers to put down their cell phones to focus on driving.

Drivers are prohibited from texting while driving and using a wireless communication device in specific locations. However, the law does not prohibit drivers from talking on a cell phone while driving.

Even when a driver does not hold a cell phone while driving, the act of talking to someone on a cell phone can be just as distracting. The driver’s mind is not focused on the traffic and the road ahead when engaged in a conversation with another person. Therefore, the risk of a distracted driving accident remains high.

2 - Being in the Car More Than Ever Before

Clearwater traffic has increased substantially over the past decade as more people move or visit the area. We also spend more time in our vehicles. Running errands, going to work, taking children to school, going to extracurricular activities, and shopping are daily and weekly trips for most of us.

Because we are in the car more, we tend to multitask. With busy lives, we rush to get from one place to another.

Therefore, we eat meals in the car, put on makeup, and even change clothes. Any activity other than driving is a potentially deadly distraction.

3 - New and Increasing Features in Vehicles

Setting and changing controls in a vehicle is a common driving distraction. With the addition of more features and options, the chance for distracted driving increases. Increasingly complex onboard audio and video systems require a driver to look away from traffic and remove his hands from the steering wheel.

Adjusting windows, mirrors, seats, sunroofs, climate control, GPS, and other settings can cause drivers to look away from the road for more than a minute. That is more than enough time to crash into another vehicle or object.

4 - Passengers, Children, and Pets

We travel with our families, friends, and pets. Many families spend a great deal of time in the car together. However, more people and pets in a car increase the number of distractions for the driver.

Reaching to take care of a pet or child could cause a car accident. Having a conversation with passengers can take your mind off the road and traffic conditions. Unfortunately, there is no way to control this type of distraction except through personal restraint.

5 - Increasing Number of Teen Drivers

The number of teen drivers continues to increase on Clearwater roads and highways. Teen drivers lack the experience to handle certain driving conditions. They need to focus their full attention on driving.

However, distracted driving is one of the common reasons for teen driving accidents. The use of cell phones and electronic devices while driving is high among teen drivers. Also, having several passengers in the vehicle is common.

Parents can help decrease the risk of teen distracted driving accidents by using apps that control phone use while driving. Some apps can monitor speed and driving behavior that indicate when a teen is driving while distracted.

6 - Overconfidence in Driving Skills

Many drivers are overconfident in their driving abilities. They believe they can operate their vehicle safely while multitasking.

Many people do not believe or do not heed the educational campaigns about the dangers of distracted driving. It can be difficult to believe that a distracted driving accident can happen to you. However, that was the belief held by most drivers before they caused an accident because they were distracted while driving.

Working to Make Clearwater Roads Safer

All drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles safely so that they do not put others on the road in danger. Understanding the dangers of distracted driving and taking steps to avoid distracted driving is the best way to protect yourself and others from injury and harm.

Headline Image: iStock/Vyacheslav Dumchev

Trending Articles

How Palworld Is Testing the Limits of Nintendo’s Legal Power

by Gregory Sirico

Many are calling the new game Palworld “Pokémon GO with guns,” noting the games striking similarities. Experts speculate how Nintendo could take legal action.

Animated figures with guns stand on top of creatures

Announcing the 2023 The Best Lawyers in America Honorees

by Best Lawyers

Only the top 5.3% of all practicing lawyers in the U.S. were selected by their peers for inclusion in the 29th edition of The Best Lawyers in America®.

Gold strings and dots connecting to form US map

The U.S. Best Lawyers Voting Season Is Open

by Best Lawyers

The voting season for the 31st edition of The Best Lawyers in America® and the 5th edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch® in America is officially underway, and we are offering some helpful advice to this year’s voters.

Golden figures of people standing on blue surface connected by white lines

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers® in the United States

by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers listed in the 28th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America® and in the 2nd Edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for 2022.

2022 Best Lawyers Listings for United States

How To Find A Pro Bono Lawyer

by Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers dives into the vital role pro bono lawyers play in ensuring access to justice for all and the transformative impact they have on communities.

Hands joined around a table with phone, paper, pen and glasses

2021 Best Lawyers: The Global Issue

by Best Lawyers

The 2021 Global Issue features top legal talent from the most recent editions of Best Lawyers and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch worldwide.

2021 Best Lawyers: The Global Issue

What the Courts Say About Recording in the Classroom

by Christina Henagen Peer and Peter Zawadski

Students and parents are increasingly asking to use audio devices to record what's being said in the classroom. But is it legal? A recent ruling offer gives the answer to a question confusing parents and administrators alike.

Is It Legal for Students to Record Teachers?

Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for 2023

by Best Lawyers

The third edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America™ highlights the legal talent of lawyers who have been in practice less than 10 years.

Three arrows made of lines and dots on blue background

The Best Lawyers in Australia™ 2024 Launch

by Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers is excited to announce The Best Lawyers in Australia™ for 2023, including the top lawyers and law firms from Australia.

Australian Parliament beside water at sunset

The Upcycle Conundrum

by Karen Kreider Gaunt

Laudable or litigious? What you need to know about potential copyright and trademark infringement when repurposing products.

Repurposed Products and Copyright Infringemen

Inflation Escalation

by Ashley S. Wagner

Inflation and rising costs are at the forefront of everyone’s mind as we enter 2023. The current volatile market makes it more important than ever to understand the rent escalation clauses in current and future commercial lease agreements.

Suited figure in front of rising market and inflated balloon

Wage and Overtime Laws for Truck Drivers

by Greg Mansell

For truck drivers nationwide, underpayment and overtime violations are just the beginning of a long list of problems. Below we explore the wages you are entitled to but may not be receiving.

Truck Driver Wage and Overtime Laws in the US

A Celebration of Excellence: The Best Lawyers in Canada 2024 Awards

by Best Lawyers

As we embark on the 18th edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada™, we are excited to highlight excellence and top legal talent across the country.

Abstract image of red and white Canada flag in triangles

Announcing The Best Lawyers in South Africa™ 2024

by Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers is excited to announce the landmark 15th edition of The Best Lawyers in South Africa™ for 2024, including the exclusive "Law Firm of the Year" awards.

Sky view of South Africa town and waterways

Best Lawyers Voting Is Now Open

by Best Lawyers

Voting has begun in several countries across the globe, including the United States, the United Kingdom and Europe. Below we offer dates, details and answers to voting-related questions to assist with the voting process.

Hands holding smartphone with five stars above phone

8 Different Types of Criminal Defenses in Law

by Best Lawyers

Learn about the different types of criminal defenses available in law, including innocence, self-defense, insanity and more. Protect your rights today.

Silver handcuffs laying on finger printed papers