Distracted driving is a leading cause of car accidents in the United States. According to Distraction.gov, crashes involving distracted drivers injure more than 400,000 people each year.
Although cell phones, radios and navigation systems are well-known distractions, many people do not realize that passengers can be just as dangerous. Backseat driving, loud noises from smartphones and other interruptions can draw a driver’s attention long enough to cause a serious collision.
If you were injured in a car crash due to another driver’s negligence, contact Morris Bart, LTD. A Biloxi accident lawyer can determine if you may have grounds for a claim.
Call 800-537-8185 to schedule a consultation. Until then, read on to learn five ways passengers can help prevent distracted driving accidents:
- Do Not Backseat Drive
As a passenger, it is important to stay calm and not create unnecessary stress in the vehicle. According to CNN, backseat drivers are rarely helpful and often prevent the driver from being decisive. You may not like the way the driver handles the vehicle, or you may approach driving with a different technique, but this does not justify backseat driving.
- Alert the Driver of Dangers
Although backseat driving is dangerous, you can help if there is an imminent danger. If you notice an unexpected hazard, such as a child in the road, speak up sternly and politely to alert the driver. This is especially important while reversing.
- Stay off Your Phone
Most people know that it is dangerous to use a cell phone while driving. What many do not realize, however, is that passenger cell phone and tablet use can be distracting. Responsible passengers should refrain from watching movies, playing games or talking loudly on cell phones while the driver is trying to concentrate.
- Help with Navigation
If you are travelling on unfamiliar roads, offer to take control of the navigation. Make sure you have suitable directions in front of you, and give the driver adequate warning of upcoming turns or exits.
- Respect the Driver
Driving with passengers can be stressful. Try to remain quiet and respectful to the driver at all times. Avoid loud conversations, do not turn the volume up on the car radio without warning, and do not move around the vehicle while it is in motion.
New Drivers Should Not Carry Passengers
Inexperienced drivers are particularly susceptible to distractions. If you are a new driver, do not carry passengers for the first six months. After that period, you should only transport one passenger until you feel confident behind the wheel. Do not be afraid to tell your passengers when they are being distracting.
If you were injured in a car accident that a negligent driver caused, contact a Mississippi accident attorney from Morris Bart, LTD. We can help you avoid mistakes such as signing a general release or accepting a low settlement offer. Schedule a consultation today by calling 800-537-8185.