Have you ever had to come to a sudden stop while driving? It can be quite an unnerving feeling, especially if, in doing so, you narrowly avoided a collision.

If the reason you had to stop so quickly was that you were distracted while driving, you might have felt a bit guilty after the fact, thinking of how the situation might have been much worse if you hadn’t stopped in time.

Perhaps you resolved to be more focused on and mindful of the task at hand while driving.

Now, if you could just get that same message out to every driver in Missouri, you and all other travelers would be a lot safer. In reality, you likely share the road with a distracted driver (or many) on a daily basis.

Three main types of distraction exist that are most often associated with motor vehicle collisions that result in catastrophic injuries or death. Learning more about distracted driving can help you improve your safety and the safety of your passengers, too.

Your hands, your eyes and your mind are key factors

Do you remember when you were learning to drive? Your instructor probably told you to keep your eyes on the road and both hands on the wheel at all times. It was sage advice.

Two distracted driving categories have to do with where your hands are and what you are looking at while you drive. The following information further explains these issues:

  • Manual distraction involves any type of activity while driving that takes one or both hands off the wheel, such as holding an electronic device, eating or drinking, or reaching toward the floor or back seat to retrieve an item.
  • You might not think it’s a big deal to change a radio station or light a cigarette while driving, but it can distract you long enough for a sudden collision to occur.
  • If you’re not looking at the road ahead and your immediate surroundings in traffic, you may be visually distracted.
  • Cognitive distractions are not always immediately apparent. This has to do with where your thoughts are while driving.
  • If another driver is daydreaming, it can cause you to wind up in the hospital with injuries suffered in a serious motor vehicle accident.

Missouri highways can be heavily laden with traffic. It’s not your job to make sure every driver on the road is adhering to traffic and safety laws. If you’re involved in an accident, you might be laid up for quite some time in recovery. Such situations are not only physically challenging, they are emotionally traumatic, as well.

Getting the care you need

It often takes a while for the magnitude of the situation to settle in after a car accident, mostly because your brain and body were in emergency-mode for the first hours or perhaps, even days, following the crash. Once doctors release you to go home, however, everyday life begins again and you might find yourself facing tremendous financial distress due to medical expenses or other costs associated with the incident.

Recovering accident victims can seek financial relief by filing personal injury claims against the distracted drivers who caused their injuries.