One common reason for an auto accident resulting in personal injury and death in New York is distracted driving. Often, drivers are distracted by cellphones. Still, the scope of the problem may be understated. Highway work zone accidents are a specific danger.

Recent research from the University of Missouri says that distracted driving from cellphone use or passenger-related distractions multiplies the chance of an accident by 29 in a highway work zone. The intent of this study is to help regulatory agencies with preventing drivers from being distracted and reduce highway work zone crashes. The following could be effective in stopping these accidents: increased education to the public as to its risk, legislation that makes texting and driving illegal, and deterrence-related policies to stop the behavior.

This research may help with technological developments including autonomous vehicles. Although police reports did not conclude whether distracted driving was a factor in work zone accidents, researchers were able to assess data regarding how the environment, the road, the vehicle and the driver influenced the collision. Essentially, they reconstructed the driver behaviors and the environment prior to the accident. The driver’s naturalistic behaviors were key in the findings. Using previous data accrued from 2006 to 2015, more than 3,000 drivers were analyzed based on their behaviors and the circumstances. This is the first study with a primary focus on highway work zones.

Because the lanes are narrower, speeding vehicles increase the likelihood of severe personal injury in a highway work zone crash. For people who are in a highway work zone and are injured in an auto accident, there are myriad issues to consider. Having experienced legal advice might be a critical factor in recovering compensation for the medical costs, lost income and long-term challenges that accompany a personal injury. The evidence that the driver was distracted may be a fundamental part of the case. Getting the maximum settlement or going to court to get a favorable judgment may require legal help.

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