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Texting, Car Accidents, & Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), as the name makes clear, are caused by “trauma”–hard/fast contact between the head and another object. Traveling accidents are the most common cause. Car, truck, pedestrian, and bike collisions often result in one’s head hitting another surface (the car, sidewalk, etc.) with considerable speed and considerable force. For this reason, serious efforts at curbing TBIs usually involve efforts to curb auto accidents.

One problem with car accident safety efforts, however, is that most people already know the dangers. You really aren’t sharing any new information with people if you say that you should not drink and drive, go too fast for conditions, follow too closely, or fail to look carefully when making turns. Most people understand these risks.

The same goes for the dangers of distracted driving. Talking on a cell phone or texting while behind the wheel is widely known to pose serious risks. Many states and cities have passed laws prohibiting some of this conducts (including Chicago & Illinois). However, tens of thousands of drivers still engage in it. Serious injuries (like brain damage) and death often follow.

The real challenge is not raising awareness of the safety risks, but in trying to convince people to actually make changes to their routine. One of the most effective ways to do that is with personal stories. It is one thing to read a statistic on the increased risk of injury or total number of distracted driving deaths, it is another to see and meet a victim.

The benefit of personal stories is behind a recent effort by one traumatic brain injury victim to prevent others from experiencing what he experienced.

According to a story from KCBD News, one man (now 22) explains how he was a passenger in a car when he was 17–the driver was texting. Because his eyes were on his phone, not the road, the driver accidentally lost control and slammed into a tree. The young man had to be cut from the windshield, and it is only by luck that he survived. However, it was not without harm; he suffered a severe traumatic brain injury.

Following his recovery, the young man joined up with the AT&T “It Can Wait” campaign which seeks to raise awareness of the dangers of texting behind the wheel. A centerpiece of the advocacy effort is a pledge where drivers agree not to text and drive. Considering the scope of the texting and driving problem, even if a few individuals decide to travel safer as a result of the campaign, there is a good chance that lives may literally be spared. Click here to learn more about the campaign.

The traumatic brain injury lawyers at our firm understand the prevalence of the distracted driving problem Every year more than 100,000 car accidents are caused by texting while driving alone. Many of those hurt in these accidents were not even the ones texting–they were hurt by the dangerous conduct of others. If you find yourself in this situation, be sure to get in touch with a legal professional to learn about your options.

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Police Warn Against the Dangers of Distracted Driving

New Study Highlights Importance of Car Safety Laws to Reduce Accident Injuries for Kids