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Texting behind the wheel: The science behind the danger

Most people understand that texting takes your mind off what's going on around you. If you're walking, you may bump into someone. If you're standing still in a mall, someone may have to walk around you, but you might not notice.

When it comes to texting behind the wheel, the dangers multiply. Texting takes your attention away from what you're doing in three ways: visually, cognitively and physically.

Why is texting so dangerous compared to other kinds of distractions?

Texting is particularly dangerous because it takes your eyes off the road while also physically taking your hands off the wheel. On top of that, you take your mind off what you're doing, which could result in a serious crash.

Texting while driving is against the law in most states and restricted to certain ages in others. It's scientifically recognized that the human brain is not designed to handle multiple tasks at the same time. When a person is doing more than one thing, it's normal for at least one of those tasks to suffer in quality as a result. When it comes to texting and driving, it's the task of driving that ends up suffering.

What happens if you're involved in a crash with a driver who was texting behind the wheel?

It's your right to pursue a claim against the driver in any case where he or she causes an accident, regardless of the cause. You can claim for hospital bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other financial losses.

When texting is involved, there's a chance that a criminal case will also take place. If that happens, you may want to wait to settle your claim until you're certain of the outcome of the case. If the criminal case against the driver succeeds, then it's easier for you to obtain better compensation.

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