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Is it safe to text at a red light?

On Behalf of | Feb 20, 2024 | Car Accidents |

Texting and driving is illegal, and it’s also dangerous. If you’ve ever tried it, you can quickly tell just how distracted you are. It can be difficult just to check notifications while the car is in motion – let alone actually typing a text message – and anything that takes your eyes off of the road increases the odds of an accident.

With this in mind, some drivers may start thinking about sending or reading those text messages whenever they get to a red light. After all, the car isn’t moving, so shouldn’t that be safe? Isn’t that a good way to stay connected and also avoid causing a car accident? 

The distraction isn’t over

Many people believe that texting at red lights or even stop signs is safe, and they will do it without thinking about the dangers. But researchers studied this practice and found that the distraction doesn’t actually end just because the person puts their phone down and starts driving again as the light turns green. Instead, they are still cognitively distracted for another 27 seconds.

This cognitive distraction could still be plenty to cause a car accident. After all, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that distraction can be cognitive, visual or manual. Setting the phone down may eliminate the manual and visual risks, but it does nothing for the mental distraction. So even a driver who just put their phone down would be more likely to cause an accident than a driver who did not use their phone at all. 

Seeking compensation

Have you been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver? Take the time to carefully consider your legal options to seek compensation for medical bills and other costs.