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Study: Simultaneous distractions can spark truck accidents

It is known that distracted driving is a dangerous behavior for anyone on the road. It is even more risky when there are semi-truck drivers who are distracted. Since there are so many trucks that go through, to and from Georgia, this is an important consideration for those who are sharing the road with these large vehicles. A distracted trucker could be using a cellphone, eating, changing the radio and doing many other activities. With the number of ways in which a driver can be distracted, it is not uncommon for there to be more than a single distraction for truckers. A new study by Lytx shows just how common and worrisome that is.

Lytx, which provides analysis for fleet owners, found that there is a tendency of distracted driving behaviors happening in clusters meaning that they are often doing more than one distracting activity while driving. When they assessed risky incidents, 23 percent included multiple distractions. Examples include eating and driving too close to the vehicle in front of them. When there was a combination of these risky behaviors, it multiplied the risk by 100 percent when compared with drivers who were only distracted by a single behavior.

On a positive note, 65 percent of drivers who were studied were using a hands-free device when they used their cellphones when driving in 2018. That was a drastic improvement from 2016 when it was 27 percent. With drivers who still held their device in their hand, there was a 13 percent rise in dangerous driving behaviors during that time. With drivers who were using a hands-free device, there was a 10 percent rise in the total number of events that included at least one other distraction.

Truck accidents can cause severe injuries and death to those in passenger vehicles. Their massive proportions, the distances they travel and the speed are intimidating to share the road with. There is good reason for that. When the inherent dangers with truck are made worse by a distracted truck driver, it raises the chance of a crash. If, as this research suggests, truckers are distracted by more than one issue, the possibility of truck accidents rises significantly. This information can be vital for a legal filing for those who have been injured and face medical expenses, lost wages, long-term damage and the loss of a loved one.

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