When most people think about distractions while driving, talking on a cell phone or texting usually come to mind. But a new one has arisen that is just as dangerous.
Selfies are pictures, and sometimes videos, taken of oneself. These self-portraits are then posted online most often through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The self-portaits becomes a serious hazard when done while driving.
The significance of this problem is evident through the following common hashtags and the number of tags posted on Instagram, as noted by the Huffington Post:
- #driving – over 3 million;
- #drivinghome – close to 50,000;
- #drivingtowork – more than 9,000; and
- #drivingselfie – over 3,500.
Other tags used behind the wheel include “#traffic” and “#ihopeidon’tcrash.” Some tags include references to driving behind semis/big rigs. Although there has been a lot of awareness raised about the dangers of texting while driving, it’s becoming apparent that taking photos is yet another problem.
In fact, Toyota recently released an ad in which drivers are warned about the risks of this dangerous behavior using the phrase, “Don’t shoot and drive.” And it’s not just selfies that are an issue. Attempting to take a picture of something else inside or outside the vehicle could lead to an accident.
How big of a problem is distracted driving?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a study conducted in 2011 revealed that 69 percent of drivers between the ages of 18 and 64 reported talking on their cell phone while driving. Thirty-one percent of these drivers reported sending/reading emails or text messages while operating a motor vehicle.
Distracted drivers can cause serious accidents that lead to significant injuries. Victims who are injured can file a claim or lawsuit to recover compensation for their damages. Gacovino, Lake & Associates can help, call (800) 246-4878.