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The dangers of distracted driving

New Jersey residents may benefit from a recent study on distracted driving that was conducted by the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety. The study found that taking their eyes off of the road, even for just two seconds, could be extremely dangerous for drivers, especially those going 70 miles per hour. In fact, during those two seconds, a driver going that fast will have covered 200 feet, which is about half the length of a football field.

The purpose of the study was to increase public awareness of the dangers of momentary distractions in hopes of lowering risks and improving safety on the roads. Although the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has recommended that a driver limit in-vehicle glimpses to two seconds or less, the study showed that drivers need even more time for their eyes to readjust when looking back at the road.

The researchers reached their findings by using a driving simulator system and an eye-tracking device. The study revealed that drivers were less capable of responding to an unexpected maneuver from other vehicles, as compared to drivers who were not distracted. In these situations, the researchers further found that the distracted drivers did not even realize they had missed the dangers they faced.

Drivers are legally responsible to use care when operating a vehicle on New Jersey roadways. With the increased use of electronic gadgets such as GPS devices and cellphones, drivers increase their likelihood of being distracted. Those who are injured in a car accident that was caused by a distracted or otherwise negligent driver may wish to speak with a personal injury attorney in order to determine the remedies that may be available for the recovery of damages that were incurred.

Source: Claims Journal, "In-Vehicle Two Second Glance Increases Driving Risk: Liberty Mutual", April 16, 2015

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