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Study finds hands-free cell phones still create risks

Oklahoma drivers who use a hands-free cell phone might be more likely to engage in other risky behavior as well. According to a study by the company Lytx, drivers often used their hands in these cases to engage in another distracting behavior in addition to talking on the phone, such as eating.

About nine fatalities per day happen in the United States because of distracted driving. It is the second-leading cause of deadly driver-caused truck accidents. However, many people do not realize that when they add a second distraction to the already-distracting activity of talking on a cell phone, even a hands-free one, their risk of having an accident goes up as well. The study also identified other unsafe behaviors that were correlated. For example, drivers who tended to not put on a seat belt were also more likely to follow the vehicle in front of them too closely and to eat while driving.

Another finding was that drivers were most likely to use their cell phones when their speed was 65 mph. According to Lytx, this might because many trucks cannot go faster than this, and they set their cruise control at this speed. Lytx surmised that this could lead to drivers becoming complacent and paying less attention.

When an accident occurs and there are injuries, the person or entity responsible for the accident is supposed to pay compensation to the injured individual. If a truck driver causes a motor vehicle accident, the trucking company might be considered liable. However, this compensation is not always straightforward, and people who are injured in truck accidents like this might want to consult an attorney. It can be difficult to prove distraction since it often relies on self-reporting from a driver, and a trucking company may argue that another issue caused the accident.