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The Dangers of Eating While Driving

Attorney Mark Rufo PC

An important element of dealing with the aftermath of a car accident in New Hampshire is assigning liability. Without understanding who is at fault, accident victims are unable to pursue the compensation needed to handle the expenses arising from their injuries and/or the damages to their vehicles. Yet the degree to which a driver is deemed to be responsible depends on whether or not they may have displayed negligence through their actions. Negligence might not always be apparent (unless, of course, someone is wearing it across their shirt). 

That often is among the outcomes witnessed in accidents where drivers were eating while behind the wheel. Many may not view eating while driving as being negligent due to eating seeming to be such a natural action. Yet research undertaken in a joint effort between the Auto Alliance and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons shows that those who choose to eat at the wheel are 3.6 times more likely to be involved in an accident than those who do not. The reason for this is the types of distractions eating introduces to a situation. One has to grasp whatever it is that they are eating, view it with their eyes and focus their attention on it to avoid spills. These distractions (while seemingly small) all serve to pull a driver’s attention away from where it should be: on the road ahead. 

While texting or talking on a cell phone while driving might be viewed as being a more dangerous type of distraction, eating behind the wheel might present a greater risk to those on the road due to its prevalence. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that as many as 80% of all car accidents may be due to eating while driving.