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Technology advances viewed as a rising cause of car accidents

In Long Beach, throughout California and across the nation, it is growing more common to see drivers whose eyes are everywhere but the road. They are looking down, clearly adjusting dials and pushing buttons. Most of these incidents are linked to smartphone and device use, but other distractions are available to drivers. These are marketed as devices to make life easier with apps for directions and other information built into the car. People who are injured or lose a loved one to a wrongful death incident in a car crash should be aware of the possibility that it was due to a distracted driver.

High-tech dashboards - also referred to as "infotainment systems" - are increasing the chance of car accidents due to the distraction they cause. A new study from Consumer Reports looked at these systems. The vehicles whose dashboard systems were found to be most distracting were Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Acura, Cadillac and Tesla. The least distracting were vehicles made by Fiat-Chrysler, GM and Ford, along with five others.

Consumer Reports states that despite the goal of making things easier for drivers, these additions can sometimes lead to confusion and more distractions. In 2016, there were more than 3,000 fatalities on U.S. roads because of a distracted driver. These systems are not just for one or two purposes. They are getting more advanced and allowing drivers to perform a multitude of tasks such as navigation, using the Internet and changing the vehicle lighting. There are other advances, such as automatic braking and warnings when the vehicle is drifting into another lane that are helping people stay safer, but setting those can be distracting by itself.

The belief is that drivers are functioning under the impression that they are safe when they might not be. With the slew of dangers already on the road and the increase of drivers who drive while distracted as technology increases, it is inevitable that there will be motor vehicle accidents because of it. Injuries and fatalities can result from a crash, with extensive life changes coming about because of it. A lawsuit is often the only way to secure adequate compensation for what was lost. Discussing a case with an attorney experienced in personal injury cases can help with investigating the circumstances and moving forward with a claim.

Source: cbsnews.com, "Are high-tech dashboards the new culprit in distracted driving?," Nov. 16, 2017

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