Opening A Bag of Chips While Driving? Don’t Do It Say the Experts

As San Francisco personal injury lawyers, we are all too aware of the dangers of driving since we represent those who have been involved in serious accidents and have suffered often traumatic injuries.

And even though California law prohibits drivers from holding a cell phone or texting while driving, there are many other distractions that can result in a serious accident. If you thought it was just cell phones, you are wrong.

Recently, the New York Times reported on the other areas of distraction that many drivers engage in daily that carry the same risk as driving while under the influence. These include opening a bag of chips or nuts, programming a GPS, getting something off the car floor your child dropped, searching for a CD or putting on makeup.

According to the experts, none of these activities is safe since cognition is compromised and all are just as big a problem as holding a cell phone or texting while driving. As noted by the NYT piece, experts say that: ” ‘[d]riving while distracted is roughly equivalent to driving drunk.’ ”

Sobering isn’t it? So much so that the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the Orthopaedic Trauma Association, have started a “Decide to Drive” campaign. Its amazing that we even need such a thing, but since Americans seem to think that they should multi-task while driving, this campaign seeks to educate drivers of the dangers of doing so while driving.

The numbers are truly staggering. The National Safety Council has stated that just this year so far there are over 300,000 accidents related to distracted driving.

The thing to do, according to the experts, is to get everything you can organized before starting the car or pull over if you need to attend to something other than driving. The long term consequences of doing otherwise are just not worth the potential for tragedy.

Hersh & Hersh represents the victims of serious injury, including that caused by car accidents or other motor vehicle accidents. If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident, please contact us for a free consultation with one of our experienced trial attorneys.