The Amount of Distracted Driving in Philly is Shocking

June 21, 2019

Philadelphia is inundated with distracted drivers, and that means more crashes, injuries, and deaths for all motorists. A new report conducted by Root Insurance Company, in honor of National Distracted Driver Awareness month, reveals that Philadelphia ranked as the third-worst city in the country when it comes to distracted driving, and Pennsylvania ranked as the fourth-least-focused state in the nation.

Any time drivers take their attention off the road, the potential for an accident increases. Every day, at least nine Americans die and 100 are injured in distracted driving crashes.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 10% (3,050) of U.S. fatal crashes in 2012 were reported as distraction-affected. In 12% of these crashes, the distraction was talking on, listening to, or manipulating a cell phone.

If you or a loved one has been injured or someone has died in a distracted driving crash, you may be entitled to compensation for physical, emotional and financial damages. However, your case must be handled correctly and competently, or you may never collect the compensation you are entitled to.

The skilled and experienced Philadelphia personal injury lawyers at Wapner Newman are committed to giving your crash case individual attention. Our distracted driving accident attorneys can provide you with dependable guidance, a listening ear, and strong legal strategies. We have helped hundreds of clients through the years to secure the compensation they are entitled to through our thorough and creative investigative legal solutions.

Please contact Wapner Newman today to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced lawyers to see how we can help.

What the Report Found

According to the report, city drivers are the most distracted. The average driver is distracted for 8% of the miles they drive and checks their phone 17 times every 100 miles. In rural areas, distracted-driving incidents occur 15 times per 100 miles; but in urban areas like Philadelphia, drivers use their phones 20% more than rural drivers do. This is despite the fact that city driving requires even more attention than driving on an open road.

Why is Distracted Driving Such a Problem?

The report classified “distracted-driving incidents” as moments when a driver picks up his or her phone while on the road. Drivers who take their eyes off the road to do activities such as checking their cell phone or fiddling with car controls while maneuvering city streets or speeding down highways not only take their own lives in their hands, they risk the lives of pedestrians and other motorists.

Any non-driving activity that has the potential to distract the driver from the primary task of driving increases the risk of crashing. Distractions can be visual (taking eyes off the road), manual (taking hands off the wheel), or cognitive (taking mind off what you’re doing). Since texting involves all three, it is particularly dangerous.  Texting takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of five seconds, which is equivalent to traveling the length of a football field at 55 mph – and doing it essentially blindfolded.

Pennsylvania Distracted Driving Laws

Pennsylvania law prohibits all drivers from texting while driving. This is a primary law, which means that a police officer has the right to pull someone over and give them a ticket for texting while driving, without having to witness another moving violation.   However, the law doesn’t prohibit drivers from talking on their cell phones while their vehicle is in motion.

Drivers Must be Responsible

Everyone who gets behind the wheel of a motor vehicle is required to drive responsibly and practice safe driving habits. When drivers devote their attention to anything other than the road, they must be held responsible for any injuries they cause.

If you or a loved one was involved in a vehicle crash that was caused by someone else’s distracted driving you may be entitled to seek damages in a lawsuit that will hold the responsible party accountable.  It is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible, as evidence can disappear quickly and insurance companies will attempt to get you to accept the lowest settlement possible. In addition, Pennsylvania has a statute of limitations of two years after the accident for filing a personal injury or property damage lawsuit.

What Does Compensation Cover?

In Pennsylvania, compensated costs and losses fall into two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages.

  • Economic damages – expenses which can be objectively calculated, such as medical, therapy, and rehabilitation costs, costs of equipment such as wheelchairs, lost income, property damage, and funeral and burial costs if a death is involved.
  • Non-economic damages – may include pain and suffering, the loss of enjoyment of life, and the loss of a marital relationship (consortium).

Contact Us for Help and Guidance

The seasoned and compassionate Philadelphia distracted driving attorneys at Wapner Newman offer a free consultation to examine the facts of any vehicle crash that caused damages. Our unique legal approach helps ensure that no stone is left unturned as we investigate and document every detail relating to your claim and do everything possible to get you the settlement you deserve.

Contact us online or call our offices today for your free consultation.