A new report detailing 2018’s road fatalities in New Jersey reveals that distracted driving was the state’s top cause of road deaths for the eighth consecutive year, highlighting a continuing trend that shows little sign of a slowdown. While many people immediately think of cellphone use and texting behind the wheel when they hear the term, “distracted driving,” any action that takes your attention away from the task at hand may fall under this umbrella.
According to WPIX, there were 563 total road deaths that occurred within state lines in 2018, and driver inattention was a contributing factor in 146 of those fatalities. These numbers give clout to a growing sentiment that distracted driving is becoming even more dangerous than drunk driving, with drunk driving shown to be a contributing factor in 143 New Jersey road deaths in 2018.
Deaths linked to distracted driving are also substantially outpacing road fatalities caused by motorists who speed. In 2018, for example, the state saw 53 deaths resulting from speed, while the number of distracted driving-related deaths was more than 10 times higher than that figure.
While distracted driving is responsible for more lives lost in New Jersey than any other cause, it is also the leading cause of road deaths at the national level. To help curb these numbers, many states have enacted new legislation in recent months and years in an effort to lower the number of distracted drivers traveling the nation’s roadways. There is some good news, however. Road deaths, in general, are on the decline, both in New Jersey and across the entire nation. Find more about car wrecks on our webpage.