Hunter & Cassidy Law

3 ways cell phones cause distracted driving

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2023 | Motor vehicle accidents

There is no doubt that smartphones have transformed life. On your smartphone, you can check and reply to your emails, texts and charts, catch up with family and friends on social media, listen to your favorite music and check the GPS for directions all instantaneously. 

However, while cell phones make life fun and easy, their use while performing sensitive tasks like driving a motor vehicle is a different ball game altogether. In fact, phone distraction is one of the leading causes of auto accidents.

But exactly how do cell phones cause distractions? Here are three types of distractions that are caused by cell phone use:

Visual distraction

Anything that takes your eyes off the road and your surroundings even for a split-second can lead to a serious accident. Cell phones cause visual distractions when you text or chat, take selfies, check the GPS app for directions or reach out for the gadget to make a call. 

Cognitive distraction

Cognitive distraction refers to anything that takes your mind off the road and the task at hand. These may include chatting or answering a phone call while driving. Common effects of cognitive distraction include reduced reaction times, poor judgment and reduced brain activity. 

Manual distraction

You need both hands on the steering wheel and feet on the pedals to drive safely. Operating a cell phone while driving, however, may require that you take your hands off the wheel. Consequently, you are likely to veer off your lane onto oncoming traffic and cause a serious head-on collision. 

Protecting your rights

No one sees an accident coming. And, while you may be responsible enough to understand the dangers that come with cell phone distractions, you might not be in control of what other motorists do in their vehicles. If you are hurt in an auto accident that is attributable to cell phone distraction, you need to pursue the liable party for the resulting damages.