South Fargo, ND- By now most Americans are well-aware of the dangers of distracted driving, and the potentially lethal consequences this bad habit can have. Behind-the-wheel distractions are plentiful but all of those distractions, whether it is a cell phone, talking to a passenger or eating, can affect a motorist’s or truck driver’s ability to be safe on the road. That is why USAttorneys’ team of truck accident lawyers in North Dakota think it is important for motorists to understand the three components of distracted driving.

First we’ll discuss some facts about distracted driving among commercial truck drivers. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration finds that truck driver is:

5.9 times more likely to cause a truck accident when they dial a cell phone.

6.7 times more likely to cause a truck accident just by reaching for their phone, and

8.9 times more likely to cause a collision while using a dispatch device.

Truck drivers are more likely cause an accident if they are distracted because the behavior affects a person in three different ways: visually, manually and cognitively.

Visual distraction: Whether a truck driver is sending a text message or eating a hamburger, they must take their eyes off of the road. When a driver reaches for that hamburger or to look at their cell phones, they must take their eyes off the road for one or more seconds. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration estimates that in a short 5 seconds, a truck driver traveling at 55 mph can travel almost 250 feet. That equates to driving the length of a football field blind.

Manual Distraction: In addition to taking their eyes off the road, a truck driver reaching for their phone, food or whatever, forces a motorist to take one of both hands of the wheel and drift out of their lane into the path of another motorist. Sometimes taking your hands off the road forces you to overcorrect and the loose control of their vehicles.

Cognitive distractions: A truck driver who takes their mind off of driving is very dangerous because they are oblivious to their surroundings and miss visual cues from traffic. Common types of cognitive distraction include daydreaming or talking on the phone.  According to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, cognitive distractions are nearly as dangerous as drunken driving.

The National Safety Council estimates that talking on a cell phone accounts for 25 percent of all traffic accidents nationwide. Federal law strictly forbids commercial drivers from using their cellphones to talk or text while driving. If a police officer sees a truck driver talking on their cell phone, they can pull that driver over and cite them. If a truck driver racks up too many citations for cell phone

No one, whether they are driving a commercial truck or a car, should be on their cell phone when they are on the road. If you or a loved one are suffering because of a distracted truck driver, USAttorneys can help you locate an accident lawyer in North Dakota to assist you with an insurance claim or help you file a formal truck accident claim.

We urge truck accident victims in South Fargo, North Dakota to contact the law firm of Solberg, Stewart & Miller for their knowledgeable and dedicated legal service. Their team is well-versed in the state’s personal injury laws and will use their knowledge to obtain the maximum settlement for you and your family.