While Tennessee authorities are investigating the exact cause of an accident that happened on a recent Thursday afternoon in February, it is speculated that driver distraction may have played a contributory role. The car wreck happened when a woman, 24, crossed the yellow line and hit a westbound traveler head-on. The impact of the crash killed the 39-year-old driver of the other car and seriously injured the 24-year-old driver.
The question of whether the 24-year-old driver was perhaps distracted has led to distracted driving being placed under the microscope. It is reported in the last year, 51 people have lost their lives due to distracted driving. While calls have gone out from authorities to be aware of the dangers of texting while driving, there are many other distractions drivers have to be aware of.
According to a Tennessee driving instructor, it seems as if accidents because of driver distraction are on the increase. Distractions can take many forms, ranging from a driver using the controls on the steering wheel to having other people or even pets in a car. Distracted driving is also not something that can be blamed mainly on young drivers anymore – drivers from all ages are now guilty.
Despite the fact there are serious consequences for drivers using cell phones while driving, many still disregard the law. Although the report does not state the 24-year-old was using her cell phone prior to the car wreck, the accident is still a clear example of the tragic consequences of driver distraction. In this case, the family of the deceased may elect to file a civil claim against the young driver. Should the investigation provide evidence that driver distraction contributed to the accident, a Tennessee court may award financial damages to the bereaved family and injured victim.
Source: wrcbtv.com, “Driving instructor warns of danger with distracted driving“, Kate Smith, Feb. 26, 2016