We all know how dangerous texting and driving is, yet thousands of Texans continue to text, surf the Internet on their mobile phones, and use applications like Facebook while driving. But some common injuries that distracted drivers suffer are caused by their cell phones.
Most people who choose to text and drive argue that they are still able to drive well, even when texting, because they excel at “multitasking.” But studies show that our brains can really only process one activity at a time. While we think that we are good at multitasking, in reality, our brains are simply switching between activities rapidly.
Distracted Driving Injuries
Some of the most common injuries that distracted drivers can suffer are injuries to the head, neck, and chest. The logic is simple. If you are texting on your cell phone, holding it about even with the steering wheel, and you hit something, your airbag could deploy, thereby knocking your cell phone out of your hand.
The average distracted driver may think, “No problem. I’ll just get a new cell phone if mine is damaged in the accident.” But if your airbag deploys while you’re holding your cell phone, the phone may not be the only thing in need of repair. An airbag deploys at a rate of speed of 100 mph, making it unlikely that you will be able to control the phone or even keep it in your hand. The problem is that when the air bag hits the cell phone, it can fly out of your hand and hit you in the face, neck, or chest.
Texas police officers have seen hundreds of minor distracted driving-related car accidents in which drivers suffer major injuries. Not only can a distracted driver suffer cuts and bruises, he could also suffer the following major injures:
- Sight impairment—the force of the airbag is strong enough to break a cell phone into pieces, sending debris flying into a driver’s face and eyes.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)—if the phone hits the driver in the head with enough force, a driver could experience a concussion or worse.
- Broken bones–the airbag could hit the driver’s hand or arm, causing bones to break. If the cell phone hits the driver’s face, he could also suffer broken bones in his head.
Of course, even if the distracted driver is lucky enough to escape injury, he could still very easily harm another person, including another driver, passenger, or pedestrian.
Stop Distracted Driving: Just Put It Down
Texting and emailing on your phone while driving can wait. If you must send a text or email, pull over to a safe area where you will not endanger other drivers or yourself.
Taking the Just Put It Down Pledge can serve as a good reminder to not use your phone while driving. For more information on the dangers of distracted driving and what you can do to end the distracted driving epidemic, download my free e-book Distracted to Death.