Like most other states, texting and driving is prohibited in Florida, and Florida also has legal restrictions on motorists using a hand-held phone while behind the wheel. However, the problem with drivers in the Tampa area and throughout the country being distracted by their phones seems to be continuing. Over 3,000 people die from distracted driving each year according to official numbers from the federal government, and many experts believe that the actual number is higher.
Moreover, although the number of fatal accidents involving cellphones has been declining over the last five or so years, the number of injury accidents related to texting or talking on one’s cellphone has increased. As of 2017, the number of injury accidents related to phones was over 40,000.
It’s also scary to think how many drivers on Florida’s roads are using their phones while also trying, and often failing, to pay attention to the road. Fewer than one-third of drivers, 30 out of 100, can honestly say that they are rarely on their phones, that is, driving distracted less than 5% of the time.
On the other hand, 12 out of 100 drivers are distracted between 20% and 30% of the time, and 45 out of 100 drivers, 45% of everyone on the road, is distracted between 5% and 20% of the time. To put this in perspective, a driver distracted by his or her phone 5% of the time is, on average, not paying attention to the road for three minutes out of every hour driven.
Unfortunately, many drivers continue to choose to drive while using their cellphones in a distracting manner. Auto-pedestrian accidents and other accidents will continue to happen as long as the trend continues. Fortunately, victims may be able to seek compensation for their losses.