WE MEET BY ACCIDENT

The dangers of overreliance on vehicle safety technology

Many people might assume that driver assistance technology in cars and trucks would make them safer, but this is not necessarily true. Texas drivers who rely heavily on this technology might tend to be more distracted due to becoming complacent. A study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that drivers who were particularly comfortable and experienced with these systems were in greater danger of becoming distracted.

Link between safety systems and distractions

Drivers who are less familiar with the safety systems do not tend to allow themselves to be distracted as easily. However, those who rely on them regularly are more likely to engage in non-driving activities. They were also more likely to do such things as look away from the road for a longer period of time than drivers who did not use the systems or who were new to them.

The importance of attention

Results were mixed or inconclusive when examining whether drivers with this technology were more likely to engage in speeding or drowsy driving. For example, the drivers who were less experienced with the safety systems were more likely to speed when the systems were activated. However, in general, the study seemed to indicate that drivers need more education in order to avoid assuming that lane-keeping systems and cruise control can replace rather than supplement attentive driver behavior. Distracted driving remains a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents, and drivers who have these safety features still need to avoid using cell phones and engaging in other types of preventable distractions while behind the wheel.

People who are injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver may be concerned about how to pay their medical bills and what to do about lost wages while they are recovering. An attorney may be able to help them get the compensation to cover these types of expenses, from working with insurance companies to filing a civil suit if necessary.