A survey published in 2018 related to traffic behavior and attitudes in the United States has been released, and the primary conclusion is that phone-related distracted driving has increased dramatically since 2013. The study also reflects that these same drivers see distracted driving as a major road hazard. Drivers across New Mexico face an increased risk any time they share the road with a distracted driver.

The study, released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, reviewed attitudes and behaviors related to traffic safety. Over 2,600 participants from every corner of the United States were interviewed. All of them had driven a car within the last 30 days.

Nearly half of those that responded to the survey admitted to either talking the phone or reading a text message while driving. Over one-third of all respondents admitted to reading a text or e-mail while behind the wheel. These figures marked a 46 percent increase in self-reported distracted drivers since 2013. This is of critical interest to anyone on the road given that talking on the phone increases the likelihood of an accident by 400 percent while texting while driving increases the odds of a crash by 800 percent. In the United States, 37,000 people lose their lives in car accidents each year. It’s likely that reducing the number of distracted drivers on the road would lower the number of fatalities significantly.

An individual hurt in a vehicle wreck caused by a distracted driver can face severe consequences. An attorney with experience in personal injury law may be able to help that person recover damages for medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages. An attorney may also be able to negotiate a settlement for those damages with the responsible party or their insurance carrier.