Much has been written about texting and driving over the past few years. We all know that it is extremely risky, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently quantified it.
According to the NHTSA, only 5 seconds of distracted driving is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field blindfolded. Indeed, some studies have shown that texting while driving has a similar effect on your reaction time as drinking four beers within an hour of driving. AAA found that it takes up to 27 seconds to recover every time you look at your phone. They actually call this the hangover effect. Indeed, it is no wonder that distracted driving is now the leading cause of motor vehicle accidents in the United States.
AAA surveyed drivers, and 96% believe that texting and drive is dangerous. Yet, nearly 40% of them admitted to doing it in the month prior. Nearly a third admitted to actually emailing while driving.
According to NHTSA data from 2020, 13% of car crashes caused by distracted driving resulted in fatalities. Another 9% (nearly 30,000) resulted in at least one injury. To drive that point home, every day, at least one person is killed as a direct result of someone texting and driving. And, at least, one other person not in a vehicle, like pedestrians, bicyclists, etc., is also killed every day. This was true from 2016 to 2020.
It is illegal
Only Montana and Wyoming do not outlaw texting and driving. It is illegal in every other state, including here in North Dakota and Minnesota.
Illegality does not seem to matter
For those in North Dakota and Minnesota, it is clear that the illegality of texting and driving does not matter. People still do it, and people are being hurt and killed as a result. If you find yourself in this position, know that you have options. You can fight back through a personal injury lawsuit.