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Study finds that roadside advertising distracts drivers

Roadside advertising, often in the form of billboards, is a staple in America. High-traffic areas mean that thousands of people are potentially exposed to advertising every hour, making it a fundamental part of many business' strategies.

However, one study has found that this advertising is very distracting to drivers. With all of the focus recently on distracted driving -- texting and driving, for the most part -- this is a very important development.

Part of the study included a questionnaire. About 50 percent of the drivers stated that advertising distracted them behind the wheel. About 22 percent said that this distraction then put them in a "dangerous situation."

When the study used driving simulators to test this, they found that people often tailgated other drivers more often when advertising was present. Drivers also changed lanes more often without using their turn signals and they broke the speed limit more frequently.

The uptick in these three areas was not as notable, however, as the amount of times that drivers recklessly drove through hazardous intersections or drifted out of the proper lane. Both of these actions were "significantly worse" around advertising, and both can quickly cause very serious car accidents.

Intersections are traditionally one of the most dangerous places on the road, and distracted driving -- like drunk driving -- is often linked to drivers leaving their lanes and sometimes causing head-on collisions.

Have you been involved in a car accident with a distracted driver? If so, it is important to look into your ability to seek financial compensation for your lost wages, medical bills and other costs.

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