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Survey looks at cell phone use while driving

Some Brooklyn drivers may be among the 47 percent who report distracted driving is their primary concern in a survey by Root Insurance. However, many of those same drivers engage in distracted driving behaviors themselves. Root Insurance offers discounts to drivers who do not use their cell phones while they are behind the wheel.

Nearly everyone recognized that there is an issue with drivers using cell phones, with 99 percent saying it was one of the main distractions. More than one-third said they had given a low rating to an Uber or Lyft driver for using a phone while driving, and 89 percent said they would do so. Despite this, many drivers still use their cell phones, and more than one-third said spotting law enforcement is not a deterrent. Over half cited group chats as one of the main distractions offered by a phone while one-third said social media was and 18 percent cited streaming media.

Drivers reported a number of other dangerous distracted behaviors as well. Nearly 20 percent said they shaved, fixed their hair or did makeup while driving, and 13 percent said they played with a pet. Nearly as many, 12 percent, said they changed clothes while driving. More than one-fourth of respondents said they had taken their hands off the wheel and driven with knees, chin or other body parts.

When drivers cause an accident because of actions such as these or others, including drunk driving or driving while fatigued, they may be responsible for the medical costs and other expenses of people who are injured. However, some people may struggle to get adequate compensation. Insurance companies may dispute the amount or even the cause of the accident or the injuries. An attorney might be able to negotiate with an insurance company to get compensation or file a lawsuit when needed.

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