Distracted driving a prominent risk in school zones, study shows

A new study discovered that while travelling through school zones, many drivers use their cellphones or engage in other forms of distraction.

While many people in Connecticut are aware of the danger of bringing out their cellphone while they are behind the wheel, many continue to participate in this dangerous activity anyway, even in places where children are present. A new study conducted by Zendrive reports that of the 88 percent of drivers who use their cellphones while driving, one in three do so while travelling through a school zone.

The details of the study

This new study analyzed the driving behaviors of nearly 4 million drivers near 75,000 schools throughout the U.S. While distracted driving is an issue in school zones throughout the day, the study discovered that the afternoon hours, or the hours between 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., were most dangerous because of heavier work traffic. More specifically, compared with the morning hours, drivers were 40 percent more likely to use their cellphones in the afternoon while driving through a school zone.

What is distracted driving?

While texting and driving is the most recognized form of distraction, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines distracted driving as any activity that takes a person's full attention away from driving. This means that drivers can endanger children in a school zone when they:

  • Try to eat or drink
  • Talk to other passengers with them in the vehicle
  • Fiddle with the stereo system in their car
  • Use their navigation system to get directions
  • Use their cellphone to talk to someone else

Even though any distracting activity can be dangerous, texting is one of the most serious distractions because drivers who either send or read a text remove their eyes from the road for five seconds. While travelling at 55 mph, this is the equivalent of driving the length of a football field without looking.

Reach out to an attorney

Distracted driving, in school zones, on freeways, on residential roads and other locations, is a serious threat to drivers in Connecticut. The NHTSA states that in 391,000 people were injured and 3,477 people were killed in distracted driving-related collisions in 2015 alone.

Those who are injured in a distracted driving collision may incur injuries that affect them financially, emotionally and physically. They may also have a difficult time going back to work, school or the normal activities of their daily life. For these reasons, drivers harmed in an accident caused by a distracted driver should reach out to an attorney in their area for assistance asserting their legal rights.