Motor vehicle collisions remain a top cause of death. In fact, traffic crashes have already caused 720 fatalities in 2014 alone, according to the Ohio State Patrol. With the risks of collisions so grave, it might be natural to assume people do not intentionally engage in behavior behind the wheel that they know to be dangerous. Unfortunately, an experienced personal injury lawyer knows that this is not the case.
A recent poll conducted by Rutgers New Jersey Medical School asked about risky driving habits. The results revealed drivers frequently think certain behaviors are dangerous when they are passengers in a car and other drivers engage in such behavior. However, when these same drivers get behind the wheel themselves, they admit to doing the very things that they said were worrisome when others did them.
Drivers Engaging in Risky Behavior
When asked about high-risk driving behavior, around 90 percent of people surveyed said that reading was an extremely dangerous activity and that they would feel very unsafe as a passenger in the car with someone who was reading a book, newspaper or tablet.
Other very dangerous behaviors included:
- Reading emails or text messages,with 87 percent of surveyed respondents saying they would feel unsafe as passengers if drivers did this.
- Talking on a hand-held cell phone, which 60 percent of respondents said they thought was unsafe and would cause them to feel uncomfortable as passengers in a car.
- Talking on a hands-free phone, with 45 percent of respondents saying they would feel unsafe as passengers if a driver used a hands-free device.
- Eating or drinking, which around half of respondents found unsafe and 23 percent of respondents found very unsafe.
Despite expressing these concerns, about half of the people responding to the very same survey said that they occasionally ate, drank or talked on their phone while driving. About 10 percent actually said that they send emails, send or read text messages, and read phone messages behind the wheel, and another five percent said that they have nodded off behind the wheel at least briefly in the prior 30 days. Just about the only thing that the drivers did not admit to doing in any significant numbers was reading a newspaper, tablet or book while driving. These behaviors were perceived as being the most dangerous of all activities.
An epidemiologist and assistant professor at Rutgers School of Public Health and Rutgers School of Health Related Professions concluded from the study that: "In general, drivers are intolerant of behaviors perceived as risky or prone to cause distraction in other drivers, but many do engage in these behaviors themselves."
If every driver held himself to the same standards that he expects others to live up to, perhaps the number of motor vehicle collisions could be reduced and lives could be saved.
Contact our Columbus, OH accident lawyers today. Call 1-800-930-SCOTT or visit http://www.sestriallaw.com for a free case consultation. Serving Franklin County, Delaware County, Licking County, Fairfield County, Pickaway County, Madison County and Union County.