Distracted Driving Dangers

Distracted Driving Dangers

When you jump in your car to head home from a busy day at work, have you ever texted your family to know you are on your way home? Or, perhaps you have noticed the driver in the car next to you checking their phone while at a stoplight. For most of us, even the most cautious drivers, witnessing (or participating) in distracted driving can feel like a normal part of driving.

Unfortunately, distracted driving is a serious public health issue. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports more than 3,000 deaths were caused by distracted driving in the course of one year. Here’s what you need to know about distracted driving and how you can play a role in keeping the roadways safer.

What is Distracted Driving?

Distracted driving is operating a vehicle while paying attention to something else. Texting while driving, talking on the phone, checking your email or scrolling through your social media newsfeed while driving (or while stopped at a stoplight) are all examples of distracted driving. While distracted driving has increased thanks to portable technology like smartphones, it has always been around. Distracted driving can also be putting on your makeup while on the way to work or turning around to scold your child in the backseat.

How Can I Stop?
There are legal implications if you are caught talking on your phone or operating your phone while driving. However, this intervention does not always keep drivers from checking their phone while on the move. You can make a positive step in the right direction by committing to eliminating distracted driving from your regular routine.

You can remind yourself about your commitment by keeping your phone in your purse and in the backseat while driving or by disabling app notifications while driving to keep you from being tempted. Your example is especially important if you have kids in the car, as these future drivers will look to you as they learn what is (and is not) acceptable in the vehicle.

Distracted driving can have fatal consequences. Put your cell phone away and teach your kids to do the same.

If you have been involved in a vehicle accident, give the team at MacCloskey Kesler & Associates a call. We will hear your story and develop a plan to get you the compensation you deserve.

What to Pack in Your Car’s Winter Safety Kit

What to Pack in Your Car’s Winter Safety Kit

Like it or not, winter is here in northern Illinois. Winter means snow, and while it can be magical watching the snow fall while you’re cozy inside, it is quite another story when driving in the midst of a snow or sleet storm. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 17% of all car accidents happen in the winter months, thanks to treacherous road conditions caused by snow and ice.

If you are in a car accident, or if your vehicle breaks down during the winter months, it can feel especially stressful. Empower yourself and keep yourself safe by keeping a winter emergency kit tucked in your trunk. Here’s what to include.

Emergency Blankets
If your car loses the ability to push out heat, you and your passengers will feel the chill quickly. Keep warm while waiting for help by pulling out emergency blankets from your car’s winter kit.

Cell Phone Charger
Your cell phone is your key to getting the help you need, especially if you are in the middle of nowhere. Keep a charger handy in your emergency kit to assure you will not run out of battery when you desperately need it.

Flashlight and Batteries
Daylight quickly fades in the winter months and trying to navigate your situation in the dark can be dangerous. Keep a flashlight and extra batteries in your emergency kit to combat the darkness.

Snacks
While bottles of water will likely freeze in your trunk during the winter months, you should toss a few snacks into your emergency kit. Protein bars can be a welcome relief while stranded alone or with passengers.

First Aid Kit
If you or your passengers are injured in an accident, a first aid kit can give you the tools you need to remedy minor problems while waiting for medical assistance.

Phone Numbers and Notebook
In case your cell phone is damaged or unusable, keep a list of emergency contacts in your kit. Include your physician and family members, as well as your personal injury lawyer. You can also use the notebook to record license plates, insurance information, or other accident details about the other parties involved. This information can be valuable as you seek to receive compensation for your ordeal.

Stay safe out there this season!

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