There is a problem with too many drivers driving distracted in Canada. The Canadian Auto Association (CAA) says that’s more than 60 percent of almost crashes are caused by some form of driver inattention. Distracted driving is responsible for 80 percent of collisions, according to CAA.
If those statistics aren’t sobering enough, here are a few more that show the serious problem distracted driving has become. Almost 20 percent of injury crashes and 10 percent of fatal crashes are directly caused by distracted driving. About 16 percent of motor vehicle traffic crashes reported to the police are related to distracted driving.
Distracted driving is much more than using your cell phone, which you aren’t supposed to do while driving.
Distracted driving is anything that you do in your moving vehicle while you’re behind the wheel that can take your attention away from the road. It can be eating or drinking, adjusting music or even adjusting a GPS system. In fact, more than 70 percent of drivers admitted to adjusting their music while driving. A disturbing 87 percent of drivers are distracted by eating and 60 percent are distracted while talking or looking at passengers. Imagine that putting on makeup made to the list, with 13% people admitting to putting on makeup while driving.
Cell phone use while driving has been a problem for a long time. Campaigns against any type of cell phone use while driving have worked hard to discourage people from using their phones when behind the wheel. CAA claims more than 25 percent of car crashes involve phone use, including hands-free devices. Texting increases the likelihood of an accident by 23 times, according to reports collected by the Insurance Bureau of Canada. Hands-free phone devices don’t make a driver less distracted. They may free up the driver’s hands so they stay on the steering wheel, but some studies cite that users of hands-free devices while driving don’t register 50% of the information around them.
While anyone can be distracted while driving, teens are at a higher risk. According to CAA, distracted driving was involved in almost 60 percent of teen crashes with nearly 50 percent of the people killed in teen distracted driving accidents were teenagers themselves.Various provinces are trying their best to curb the number of accidents and fatalities associated with distracted driving. In Canada, the only province or territory that does not have a distracted driving law is Nunavut. The consequences of distracted driving become harsher with each offense. Most fines involve a fee and demerit points on your license which impacts your licence rate and insurance premiums. Some of the provinces have legislations specifically targeting cell phone use while driving, while fines can be issued for any type of distracted driving in most of the provinces. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident due to distracted driving, it is important to call on an injury lawyer in Collingwood before filing a claim.