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What distractions drivers should steer clear of

Distracted driving has become an epidemic across New York and the rest of the U.S., and it's not just phones and in-vehicle tech that are contributing to the trend. Of course, drivers should refrain from all phone use, including hands-free phone use, when driving, but they must also be aware that even eating, drinking and having conversations with passengers can constitute a distraction.

Drivers may want to institute a no-eating policy or limit the number of passengers they have in their cars. On the other hand, they could have a passenger take on potentially distracting activities for them, such as sending texts and using the navigation system.

Many drivers fail to get the minimum seven hours of sleep, which leads to drowsiness, another factor in inattentive driving. Drowsy drivers may suffer from memory lapses, have trouble focusing and even drift out of their lane. If they engage in shift work or drink alcohol before heading out, their chances of becoming drowsy increase. Naps and caffeine can help when drivers have no choice but to go on a long trip.

Lastly, teens should be held to a strict standard with regards to distracted driving. More than any other age group, teens are at a high risk for car crashes.

Those who are injured in a car accident and who discover that the other driver was distracted may think about filing a personal injury claim. It can be complicated, but if the case is a strong one, it may proceed smoothly enough with legal assistance. A lawyer may have investigators and other third parties come in to strengthen the case. If the guilty party was on the phone at the time of the crash, for instance, an attorney might obtain the phone records to present during negotiations.

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