Distracted driving: A growing problem in Colorado

Distracted driving is a serious and growing problem in the United States. As more technology is released, it's becoming even more likely that people will be performing other tasks behind the wheel. Unfortunately, that puts their lives in danger and endangers those around them.

Distracted driving includes many acts from changing a radio station to talking to friends or using a cellphone. Anything that causes you to look away from the road is enough to be considered a distraction. Interestingly, distractions affect all age groups and is not limited to teens or new drivers.

The Colorado Department of Transportation found that 37.4 percent of people in Colorado involved in distracted-driving crashes between 2012 and 2014 were between 21 and 34 years old. Cellphones were a leading distraction as of the 2015 report.

What's most disturbing about the amount of distracted driving witnessed in the state is that 98 percent of people surveyed around the nation know that distracted driving is a danger to themselves and others. Despite that, a shocking 75 percent admit to having been distracted behind the wheel in the past.

In 2015, 13 percent of all Coloradan traffic fatalities could be attributed to distracted driving. In 2014, only 12 percent were attributed to distracted driving. That growth, though small, is an indication of a growing problem in the state that you must be aware of.

As a driver in Colorado, know that you have a right to pursue compensation if someone hits you because of being distracted. People know distractions are dangerous and make the dangerous decision to participate in those acts anyway. You shouldn't have to suffer as a result.

Source: Colorado Department of Transportation, "Distracted Driving," accessed June 23, 2017

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