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Study shows distracted driving at its peak in summer

As the public policy division of a leading provider of property casualty insurance, the Travelers Institute has good reason to raise awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. Drivers in New Jersey will be interested to hear about the Every Second Matters™ event, which was just launched. The institute hosted this event on Capitol Hill on June 15 and also issued a report intended to get the conversation started about distracted driving.

The Institute also brought up some interesting data from TrueMotion, a smartphone telematics platform. Using sensor data from its mobile app, TrueMotion Family, the company analyzed the behavior of more than 20,000 drivers during the 8.4 million trips they took between January 2017 and May 2018. It found that the drivers were most frequently distracted by their smartphones during the months of June, July and August.

Those same three months, according to data from NHTSA, see a 29 percent increase in road deaths from the winter months of December, January and February. While no definitive link has been made, distracted driving may be partly responsible for this increase. In summer, more people are on the road for vacations and holiday celebrations.

Distractions take a person's attention away from driving and eliminate reaction time. The Travelers Institute hopes that the day will come when distracted driving becomes as unacceptable as driving drunk or without wearing a seat belt.

In the event of a motor vehicle accident, victims who know they were not at fault may have the grounds for a personal injury claim. A lawyer and his or her team of professionals could help with the gathering of evidence, which could include cell phone records and eyewitness testimony in addition to the police report. Once it's clear that the other party was distracted or negligent in some other way, an attorney could negotiate for a settlement out of court.

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