Distracted driving has become an increasing threat on United States roadways. In response to this, most states, including New Mexico, have enacted laws prohibiting texting while driving. A new poll conducted by the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America indicates that people believe texting while driving is even more dangerous than driving whiled influenced by marijuana.
The study found that 98 percent of Americans surveyed believed that texting while driving is more hazardous than operating a vehicle under the influence of cannabis. While 91 percent of those surveyed believed that driving while influenced by marijuana is dangerous, only 40 percent believed that it is a frequent contributor to motor vehicle accidents.
According to the Insurance Institute for Motor vehicle safety, researchers have not been able to directly correlate marijuana use with increased risk of motor vehicle accidents. However, pot use affects a driver's motor function and reaction time, which can affect the way a person drives or responds to an emergency in the event of a car crash.
Distracted driving and marijuana use are both likely to continue to be a problem on U.S. roadways. As more states legalize marijuana for medical or personal use, more people may drive while under the influence. Despite distracted driving laws designed to prohibit texting while driving, cell phone use continues to be a common cause of car accidents.
A car accident victim may benefit from consulting an attorney. The lawyer could help the client file a personal injury claim that covers medical costs, pain and suffering and other damages.